A pastel drawing hung in a public health center in Shiojiri, Nagano Prefecture, has been confirmed as an original artwork by famed children's book illustrator Chihiro Iwasaki, officials at Chihiro Art Museum said Friday.
The museum houses at least 9,400 pieces by Iwasaki (1918-74), many of which are watercolors, with pastel drawings accounting for only around 100 of them. The museum confirmed the authenticity of the piece after an inquiry was made in October.
The piece measuring 36 by 24 centimeters depicts a smiling girl and is signed April 16, 1971, around the time when the illustrator was actively working with pastels, according to the officials.
A replica will be shown to the public Jan. 8-27 at a municipal library in Shiojiri, while the original, which remains in the possession of the city, will be put on display at the museum in the village of Matsukawa in the prefecture from March 1 through May 7.