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Elizabeth Keith

1881 - 1956


British artist Elizabeth Keith traveled to East Asian and Southeast Asian countries and depicted the people and culture therein in the early 20th century. She is one of the few Western artists whose oeuvre consists of artworks with Asian subjects only. Keith visited Korea in March 1919 for the first time and worked on watercolors while she was in Korea. Her watercolor works were exhibited in Tokyo in the winter of that year. Watanabe, a publisher who saw Keith’s works at the exhibition, convinced Keith to transform one of her works, the East Gate, Seoul by Moonlight, into a woodblock print. It turned out to be a great success. Two years later, in 1921, Keith had an art exhibition in Seoul, which was the first time a foreign artist had an exhibition in Korea.


Her artworks showcase Korean traditions that modernized Koreans no longer practice nowadays. Her woodblock prints and watercolors are beautiful and valuable from both aesthetic and historical viewpoints. Her artistic point of view is full of humanity and compassion, which is well portrayed in her book entitled “Old Korea: The Land of Morning Calm.”  The book includes chapters on customs, people, festivals, clothing, culture, and activities of the Korean people in the early 20th century.   

Keith's Artworks


Wonsan, Korea 1921 Woodblock Print 23.7 x 37 cm

Buddha's Birthday

Buddha's Birthday 1919 Woodblock Print 16.8 x 26.5 cm

A Temple Kitchen

A Temple Kitchen, Diamond Mountains, Korea 1920 Woodblock Print 26.7 x 34.5 cm

Young Korea

Young Korea 1920 Woodblock Print 37.7 x 26.1 cm

Country Wedding Feast

Country Wedding Feast, Korea 1921 Woodblock Print 36 x 23.5 cm

Lady with a Child

Lady with a Child 1934 Risograph 37.5 x 43.4 cm

Marriage Procession

Marriage Procession, Seoul 1921 Woodblock Print 38 x 25.7 cm

New Year's Shopping

New Year's Shopping, Seoul 1921 Original Watercolor 25.7 x 37.5 cm

The Scholar

The Scholar, Korea 1921 Woodblock Print 31.4 x 44.5 cm

Wonsan Scholar and his Disciples

The Wonsan Scholar and His Disciples 1921 Woodblock Print 23.5 x 36 cm


Embroidering, Korea 1921 Woodblock Print 23 x 31.2 cm

Returning from the Funeral

Returning from the Funeral 1922 Woodblock Print 23.8 x 37.5 cm

Korean Mother and Child

Korean Mother and Child 1929 Color Etching 26 x 33 cm

East Gate

East Gate, Pyeng Yang, Korea 1925 Woodblock Print 45 x 31.4 cm


Riverside, Pyeng Yang, Korea 1925 Woodblock Print 25.5 x 38 cm

Two Korean Children

Two Korean Children 1940 Woodblock Print 17 x 24 cm

The Flute Player

The Flute Player 1927 Etching 22.8 x 24.5 cm

The Gong Player

The Gong Player 1927 Etching 20.2 x 23 cm

A Game of Chess

A Game of Chess 1921 Woodblock Print 42.2 x 31.2 cm

Wedding Guest

Wedding Guest, Seoul 1936 Woodblock Print 24.1 x 31.2 cm

A Daughter of the House of Min

A Daughter of the House of Min 1938 Color Etching 23.8 x 37.1 cm

Court Musicians

Court Musicians, Korea 1938 Etching 40.6 x 27.3 cm

Korean Bride

Korean Bride 1938 Woodblock Print 29.5 x 41 cm

From the Land of the Morning Calm

From the Land of the Morning Calm 1921 Woodblock Print 23.5 x 33 cm

East Gate by Moonlight, Seoul

East Gate, Seoul by Moonlight 1920 Woodblock Print 43 x 39.7 cm

Tong See, the Buddhist Priestess

Tong See, the Buddhist Priestess Undated Color Etching 29.2 x 38.1 cm

Lazy Man Smoking

Lazy Man Smoking Undated Original Watercolor 26.1 x 41.8 cm

Woman in Green Cloak

The Green Cloak Undated Original Watercolor 26 x 36 cm

Wall of Korea

Wall of Korea, Korea Undated Original Watercolor 51 x 41 cm

Nobleman in Confucin Ceremony

Nobleman in a Confucius Ceremony 1938 Color Etching 29.2 x 38.1 cm

Morning Gossip

A Morning Gossip, Hamheung, Korea 1921 Woodblock Print 26 x 38.5 cm

Mornong Mists

Morning Mist, Korea 1922 Woodblock Print 36.8 x 24.1 cm

The Nine Dragon Pool

The Nine Dragon Pool, Diamond Mountains 1921 Woodblock Print 17.6 x 36.6 cm

The Diamond Mountains

The Diamond Mountains, A Fantasy 1921 Woodblock Print 17.6 x 36.5 cm

Admiral Yi Sun-sin

Admiral Yi Sun-sin (Presumed) Undated Photo Reproduction of Watercolor 55 x 77 cm

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