An image of Onoe Kikujirô II as Okin, Ichikawa Ichinosuke as Tamamatsu and Ichikawa Kodanji IV as Tôji in 'Sandai Banashi Kôza no Shinsaku or Chô Chidori Suma no Kumiuchi'

Toyohara Kunichika

(Japan 1835 – 1900)

Onoe Kikujirô II as Okin, Ichikawa Ichinosuke as Tamamatsu and Ichikawa Kodanji IV as Tôji in 'Sandai Banashi Kôza no Shinsaku or Chô Chidori Suma no Kumiuchi', from an album of 'ukiyo-e' woodblock prints of 'kabuki' actors

Location
Not on display
Further information

The album contains 34 striking images of kabuki actors by six late 19th century woodblock print designers: Utagawa KUNISADA I (1786-1864), Utagawa KUNISADA II (1823-1880), Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900), Utagawa KUNIAKI II (1835-1888), Utagawa YOSHICHIKA (fl. 1850-60 in Osaka) and Utagawa KUNIHISA (1832-1891).

The album includes 27 multiple-sheet sets and 7 single-sheet prints, mostly dating from the early 1860s and therefore representing the last flowering of the 'ukiyo-e' woodblock print tradition. Published as sheet prints and bound together soon after publication by a Japanese collector, the prints have survived in superb condition. Almost without exception, they are fine impressions. They all show the brilliant colours typical of the period, when imported aniline dyes were being used to dramatic effect.

Asian Art Department, AGNSW, August 2005.

Place of origin
Japan
Period
Japan: Edo (Tokugawa) period 1615–1868
Year
1863
Media
Print, Book
Medium
colour woodblock print; diptych
Dimensions
36.0 x 49.0 cm image; 36.0 x 24.0 x 1.5 book
Signature & date

(right sheet) signed "Itto Kunichika ga", block carver's seal of Ota Tashichi, Izutsuya publisher's seal; (left sheet) signed "Kochoro Toyokuni ga", Ota Tashichi block carver's seal, Izutsuya publisher's seal.

Credit
James and Robin Patricia Giffen Bequest 2005
Accession number
280.2005.3