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Yoshitoshi
an online exhibition

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Utagawa Kunisada 1786-1865
Bandô Hikosaburô as Kudô Saemon

Utagawa Kunisada

Colour print from woodblocks, with blind embossing (karazuri), textile printing (nunomezuri) and gloss black (tsuyazumi).
Ôban format.
Block-cutter: hori Take (Yokokawa Takejirô).
Publisher: Uoei (Uoya Eikichi). 12/1861.

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From the series Tôsei jihitsu kagami (Mirror of Contemporary Autographs), published 12/1861, with portraits by Kunisada juxtaposed against landscapes or still-lifes designed sometimes by Hiroshige or (in this case) his pupil Ichiyûsai Shigenobu, known as Hiroshige II (1826-69).

This print was evidently intended as advance publicity for the appearance of Bandô Hikosaburô in the role of Kudô Saemon in a performance of Sano kei zu Soga no gosho-zome (A Sano lineage Soga of courtly hue) at the Nakamura theatre from 01/1862. A New Year hokku poem, signed in imitation of the actor's own calligraphy, appears down the right on the tanzaku (long poem card):

A blessing to the branches which still do not sprout the east wind of spring

Click here for Yoshitoshi's print of this actor

Given by David Scrase, 1994

P.113-1994