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Katsukawa SHUNTEI (1770-1820)



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A fabulous and extremely rare triptych showing the ama diver Tamatori-hime escaping from the Dragon King’s Palace with the priceless pearl. The story (with variations) relates how the Dragon King stole the jewel during a storm when it, and two other treasures, were being sent to Japan by the Tang dynasty emperor in memory of his consort’s father, Kamatari. Subsequently, Fujiwara no Fuhito, the son of Kamatari, searches for the pearl; meets the pearl diver Tamatori-hime, falls in love and marries her. She vows to retrieve the pearl which she eventually achieves but is pursued through the ocean by the dragon and a myriad grotesque sea creatures who were guarding it. Published by Kawaguchiya Uhei, c. 1810.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Shuntei ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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A triptych of the Ink Wars, Bokusen no zu. Evidently a court pastime during the Nara period (710-794) was to stage ink battles. Courtiers are involved in throwing ink and daubing each other with brushes. Published by San, 1843.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi giga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa SADAHIDE (1807-1873)



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An exceptionally rare triptych showing the great battle between Takeda Shingen (left) and Uesugi Kenshin (right) during the fourth (of five) Kawanakajima battles. Kenshin lunges with his sword but is parried by Shingen using his iron war fan (gunbai). These skirmishes took place in the mid. 16th century. I can, at the moment, only locate one damaged impression of this fine design. Published 1846 by Tsujiokaya Bunsuke.

 

Very good impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Gyokuransai Sadahide ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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The warrior Ritchitaisai Genshoji in a boat attacked by grappling-hooks thrown by his adversaries. A design from the set Tsuzoku Suikoden goketsu hyaku-hachi-nin no hitori, “The Hundred and Eight Heroes of the Popular Suikoden, One by One.” Based on the Chinese novel Shui Hu Zhuan, attributed to Shi’Nai’an, which tells of a band of 108 brigands who operated from Liangshan Marsh. Published by Kagaya Kichiyemon, 1827-30. Robinson S2.53.

 

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size (unusual as these prints are overlarge obans and often trimmed). Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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The ghost of Genta Yoshihira, having been executed by Taira no Kiyomori, springs into the air causing a thunderstorm and exacting revenge. The best design from Shingata sanjurokkaisen, “New Forms of Thirty-Six Ghosts.” Published 1889 by Sasaki.

 

Very fine impression, colour and condition. The first edition. Signed Yoshitoshi.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839 – 1892)




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The ghost of Genta Yoshihira. The best design from Shingata Sanjurokkaisen, “New Forms of Thirty-Six Ghosts”. Published 1889.


Fine impression, colour and condition. First edition. Signed Yoshitoshi.



Status: Sold

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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Taira no Kiyomori haunted by strange sights, Taira no Kiyomori kaii o miru zu. Hiroshige’s finest musha-e. A triptych showing the dying Taira no Kiyomori, head of the Taira clan, tormented by hallucinations and seeing, from the veranda of his palace, the garden covered in snow and transmogrified into the skeletons and skulls of the people he had slain. His lover cowers behind him. Published by Ibaya Kyubei, c. 1845. A wonderful design.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. The first sheet doesn’t quite match because the publishers had to fit in the title cartouche which protrudes into the top margin. This is the same on every impression. Signed Hiroshige ga and Ichiryusai Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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Kido Maru learning magic from the forest tengu. Possibly Kuniyoshi’s greatest design in this genre. He is shown, cross-legged,atop a giant python, two wrapped pine sprigs (aomatsuba) in his mouth. A long dagger is driven into the python’s head and snakes curl around its blade. Robinson SIF.1. Illustrated in colour , pl. 12, and also used on the front cover of B. W. Robinson, Kuniyoshi: The Warrior-Prints, Phaidon, 1982. This is the rare first edition published by Tsutaya Kichizo, c 1840 with the kiwame seal above publisher.

 

Very fine impression with fine gradation (missing later on). Fine colour. Imperceptible fold, otherwise fine condition. Full size. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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A vertical diptych showing the famous poet and court noble, Ariwara no Narihira (825-880), on horseback with his attendant before Mt. Fuji on their way to the east. The eastern journey was one of the main parts of the Ise Monogatari. Published by Marukyu, c 1845-6.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size with ample room for joining. This is the best copy of this design I have seen. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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A rare vertical diptych showing the famous Daimyo Uesugi Kenshin (1530-1578). He ruled Echigo Province and was known as a skillful administrator as well as warlord; also for his rivalry with Takeda Shingen who he fought at the fourth battle of Kawanakajima. Published by Jubei Yorozuya, 1846.

 

Fine impression and colour. Extensive mica applied to the headgear. Yellow ground. Very slight trimmimg at bottom, otherwise full size with ample room for joining. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Toyohara CHIKANOBU (1838-1912)



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A triptych showing the Shinto Storm God Susanoo about to slay the eight-headed dragon, Yamata no Orochi, at the head of the Hi river in pouring rain. The dragon devoured virgins and had eaten the seven daughters of two earthly deities, seen top right. The eighth, Kushi-inada-hime, also on right, is saved by Susanoo who encourages the dragon to drink eight times brewed sake from eight vats which intoxicates it enough to be killed. Rare: Chikanobu is not known for this type of subject. Published c 1870s.

 

Very good impression, colour and condition. Mica applied to sky, rain printed in silver. Full size. Signed Yoshu Chikanobu hitsu.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa YOSHITORA (Active c 1850-1880)



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The Dragon Princess rising from the sea to the amazement of Taira no Kiyomori (1118-1181) and his court. Published by Enshuya Hikobei, 1861.

 

Fine impression and colour. Very slightly trimmed, otherwise fine condition. Signed Yoshitora ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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A triptych showing a scene during the siege of Nagashino Castle by Takeda Katsuyori. Torii Suneemon Katsutaka was sent to get help and managed to evade the guards. He insists on returning to his comrades but meanwhile Takeda has fastened bells to the cables on the castle’s exit which gave the alarm and frightens a flock of herons. Katsutaka was captured and died a samurai’s death shouting hold fast to his comrades. Takeda’s troops were subsequently massacred. Published by Kinseido, 1868. From a series Bidan musha hakkei, “Eight Views from Fine Tales of Warriors.”

 

Very fine impression, the rain beautifully burnished; blind-printing and mica applied. Fine colour and condition. Full size. A fine copy. Signed Tsukioka Yoshitoshi hitsu.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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The brothers Goro and Juro battling Kikko Kojiro and Aiko Saburo in the pouring rain. From a set Soga monogatari zue, “The Revenge of the Soga Brothers.” A set of 30 prints published by Ibaya Senzaburo, 1848. This famous story has many versions but basically it tells how Kawazu Sukeyasu was murdered by his cousin Kudo Suketsune. Sukeyasu left two sons and his widow remarried a man called Soga. He adopted the two children and they waited patiently for an opportunity to kill Suketsune which came when he was hunting near Mt. Fuji. They killed him but were themselves slain in the ensuing battle. This is the first edition, it was republished in 1858 by Yamaguchiya Tobei.

 

Fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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Hakomaru (Soga no Goro) stands on top of a steep cliff holding a huge boulder. From a set Soga monogatari zue, “The Revenge of the Soga Brothers.” A set of 30 prints published by Ibaya Senzaburo, 1848. This famous story has many versions but basically it tells how Kawazu Sukeyasu was murdered by his cousin Kudo Suketsune. Sukeyasu left two sons and his widow remarried a man called Soga. He adopted the two children and they waited patiently for an opportunity to kill Suketsune which came when he was hunting near Mt. Fuji. They killed him but were themselves slain in the ensuing battle. This is the first edition, it was republished in 1858 by Yamaguchiya Tobei.

 

Fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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Asahina Saburo tugging on Goro Tokimune’s armour. From a set Soga monogatari zue, “The Revenge of the Soga Brothers.” A set of 30 prints published by Ibaya Senzaburo, 1848. This famous story has many versions but basically it tells how Kawazu Sukeyasu was murdered by his cousin Kudo Suketsune. Sukeyasu left two sons and his widow remarried a man called Soga. He adopted the two children and they waited patiently for an opportunity to kill Suketsune which came when he was hunting near Mt. Fuji. They killed him but were themselves slain in the ensuing battle. This is the first edition, it was republished in 1858 by Yamaguchiya Tobei.

 

Fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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A noblewoman is directed to the Soga shrine by a wood-gatherer. From a set Soga monogatari zue, “The Revenge of the Soga Brothers.” A set of 30 prints published by Ibaya Senzaburo, 1848. This famous story has many versions but basically it tells how Kawazu Sukeyasu was murdered by his cousin Kudo Suketsune. Sukeyasu left two sons and his widow remarried a man called Soga. He adopted the two children and they waited patiently for an opportunity to kill Suketsune which came when he was hunting near Mt. Fuji. They killed him but were themselves slain in the ensuing battle. This is the first edition, it was republished in 1858 by Yamaguchiya Tobei.

 

Fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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Goro Tokimune comes across the wrestler Goromaru. From a set Soga monogatari zue, “The Revenge of the Soga Brothers.” A set of 30 prints published by Ibaya Senzaburo, 1848. This famous story has many versions but basically it tells how Kawazu Sukeyasu was murdered by his cousin Kudo Suketsune. Sukeyasu left two sons and his widow remarried a man called Soga. He adopted the two children and they waited patiently for an opportunity to kill Suketsune which came when he was hunting near Mt. Fuji. They killed him but were themselves slain in the ensuing battle. This is the first edition, it was republished in 1858 by Yamaguchiya Tobei.

 

Fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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Onio and Dozaburo, the retainers of the Soga Brothers. From a set Soga monogatari zue, “The Revenge of the Soga Brothers.” A set of 30 prints published by Ibaya Senzaburo, 1848. This famous story has many versions but basically it tells how Kawazu Sukeyasu was murdered by his cousin Kudo Suketsune. Sukeyasu left two sons and his widow remarried a man called Soga. He adopted the two children and they waited patiently for an opportunity to kill Suketsune which came when he was hunting near Mt. Fuji. They killed him but were themselves slain in the ensuing battle. This is the first edition, it was republished in 1858 by Yamaguchiya Tobei.

 

Fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Katsukawa SHUNTEI (1770-1820)



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Yamamoto Kansuke (Haruyuki) (1501-1561) overpowering a gigantic boar. Takeda Shingen’s most valuable general and one of the Takeda nijushi-sho, “Takeda’s Twenty-four [most trusted] Generals.” Kansuke was involved in a lengthy feud with Kenshin Tora and is killed in one of their skirmishes at Kawanakajima on 12 Oct. 1561.

 

Very good impression, colour and condition. Signed Shuntei ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1865)



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Taira no Tadamori (1096-1153) grappling with the oil thief from a set: Honcho komei kagami, “A Mirror of our Country’s Renowned Heroes.” Published by Joshuya Kinzi, c 1835. The story relates how the Emperor Shirakawa was perturbed by a monster in the precincts of the Mido Temple at night. The samurai Taira no Tadamori was ordered to kill the beast only to discover a harmless old monk who steals a little oil from the stone lanterns. Kunisada designed a number of sets like this around this date.

 

Fine impression and colour. Very slightly trimmed, otherwise very good condition. Signed Kochoro Kunisada ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichieisai YOSHITSUYA ( 1822-1866 )




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Takamatsu Naizen and Tateshina Danjo Masatada grappling during the Battle of Kawanakajima in the mid 16th century. They are heavily entwined in the red ribbons of the standards. Published by Tsujiokaya Bunsuke in 1857.


Fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichieisai Yoshitsuya.


Status: Sold

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Mori YOSHIYUKI ( 1835-1879 )




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Shows Hido Hachiro holding the decapitated head of an enemy from Honcho buyu kagami, “Mirror of our Country’s Military Elegance.” Yoshiyuki was a pupil of Yoshiume and designed the set A Hundred Views of Osaka. He moved to Tokyo in 1868. Published by Tsutaya, c 1868. Rare: The first time I have catalogued this set.


Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Yoshiyuki ga.


Status: Sold

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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The ronin Yazama Shinroku Fujiwara Mitsukaze ) from Seichu gishinden, “Tales of True Loyalty.” From a rare uncompleted set of the 47 Ronin published 6/1868 by Masudaya. Thirteen designs extant. It has been suggested that the set was completed but that the others are not known based on the fact that two of the prints are numbered 3 and 46. An error as artists did not commence and progress from number 1. Artists chose at random which numbers from a set to start with. Well known examples being Hiroshige’s Tokaido and Kisokaido.


Very good impression and colour. Small backed wormage and light album backing. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1798-1861)




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Kwanyu ( Chin. Kwan Yu ), the celebrated warrior who was deified in 1591 as Kwan Ti, the God of War. Shows the warrior standing on a partially submerged boat, far right, with his long black beard and carrying a huge halberd overlooking the river battle with the Seven Armies of Gi ( Wei ). Published by Tsutaya Kichizo 1854.


Very good impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.


Status: Sold

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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The ronin Okudera Kouemon Fujiwara Hidetomi ( number 7 ) from Seichu gishinden, “Tales of True Loyalty.” From a rare uncompleted set of the 47 Ronin published 6/1868 by Masudaya. Thirteen designs extant. It has been suggested that the set was completed but that the others are not known based on the fact that two of the prints are numbered 3 and 46. An error as artists did not commence and progress from number 1. Artists chose at random which numbers from a set to start with. Well known examples being Hiroshige’s Tokaido and Kisokaido.


Very good impression and colour. Light album backing. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.


Status: Sold

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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The ronin Muramatsu Sandayu Fujiwara Takano ( number 46 ) from Seichu gishinden, “Tales of True Loyalty.” From a rare uncompleted set of the 47 Ronin published 6/1868 by Masudaya. Thirteen designs extant. It has been suggested that the set was completed but that the others are not known based on the fact that two of the prints are numbered 3 and 46. An error as artists did not commence and progress from number 1. Artists chose at random which numbers from a set to start with. Well known examples being Hiroshige’s Tokaido and Kisokaido.


Very good impression and colour. Small backed wormhole and light album backing. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1864)




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An extremely rare set of hosoban designs: Pictures of Various Women of imperial Japan. Shows, on the left, Princess Joruri – the lover of Yoshitsune. On the right Suke no Tsubone, the wet-nurse of the child Emperor Antoku who both drowned at the battle of Dan-no-ura in 1185. Published by Shimizuya Tsunejiro, 1845.

 

 

Very good impression and colour. Small repaired wormage on each sheet, otherwise very good condition. Signed Toyokuni ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

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Ichieisai YOSHITSUYA (1822-1866)




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Minamoto no Yoshitsune, on the right holding a large bow, and Benkei, in the centre, face a large white dragon which emerges amongst lightning bolts from the Koromo River at the battle of Takadachi in 1187. Bunji sannen Oshu Takadachi kassen Koromogawa yori hakuryu ten e noboru. Published by Tsujiokaya Bunsuke (Kinshodo), 1857. A fine design.

 

 

Fine impression and colour with mica applied to the dragon and silver rain. Very slight trimming, otherwise fine condition. Signed Ichieisai Yoshitsuya ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

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Ichieisai YOSHITSUYA (1822-1866)




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Higuchi no Jiro Kanemitsu, a retainer of Kiso no Yoshinaka, in the Kiso Mountains encounters a giant white baboon (ohishi) which has been terrorising the countryside and attacks it with a long bamboo spear. The creature hangs from a tree with one of Kanemitsu’s followers in its mouth. Published by Tsujiokaya Bunsuke (Kinshodo), 1858.

 

 

Very fine impression and colour. Fine condition. Signed Ichieisai Yoshitsuya ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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A triptych showing Ban Danemon Naoyuki exorcising the Bakemono in Masanori Fukushima’s mansion. A badger ghost rears up surrounded by other goblins, one of whom attempts to appease him with tea. Fukushima no yakata ni oite Naoyuki kori o taiji no zu. Published by Tsujibun, 1866.

 

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Kaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu and Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Boar from a chu-tanzaku set of twelve prints Buyu mitate junishi, “Chosen Heroes for the Twelve Signs.” Based on the Chinese zodiac system of twelve animals. Shows Yuryaku Tenno, the 21st Emperor (457-480) by a waterfall killing a huge boar. Said to have occurred at Mount Katsuragi in 461. Published by Minatoya Kohei, c. 1840.

 

Very good impression and colour. Minimal trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Dog from a chu-tanzaku set of twelve prints Buyu mitate junishi, “Chosen Heroes for the Twelve Signs.” Based on the Chinese zodiac system of twelve animals. Shows Hata Rokurozayemon, a follower of Nitta Yoshisada, with an array of weapons and accompanied by his dog. Published by Minatoya Kohei, c. 1840.

 

Very good impression and colour. Minimal trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Cock from a chu-tanzaku set of twelve prints Buyu mitate junishi, “Chosen Heroes for the Twelve Signs.” Based on the Chinese zodiac system of twelve animals. Shows Kwaido Maru, the boy Kintoki, umpiring a match between a cock and a young tengu. Published by Minatoya Kohei, c. 1840.

 

Very good impression and colour. Minimal trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Kobayashi KIYOCHIKA (1847-1915)




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A triptych, Akechi Samanosuke Mitsuhara kosui joho Karasaki matsu no zu. Shows Akechi Samanosuke Mitsuhara swimming with his horse, his kikyo (Chinese bell flower) standard tied to his back, across Lake Biwa to his cousin’s house at Sakamoto where he kills Mitsuhide’s wife and children to prevent them being captured. The Karasaki pine can be seen in the background. The event takes place in 1582. One of Kiyochika’s best designs. Published 1899.

 

Fine impression and colour. Album backing and slight vertical fold on centre panel. Signed Kiyochika hitsu.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Snake from a chu-tanzaku set of twelve prints Buyu mitate junishi, “Chosen Heroes for the Twelve Signs.” Based on the Chinese zodiac system of twelve animals. Shows Nitta Shiro (Tadatsune) inside Mount Fuji during Yoritomo’s hunting party (1193) encountering snakes and a vision of the goddess of the mountain. Published by Minatoya Kohei, c. 1840.

 

Very good impression and colour. Minimal trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Dragon from a chu-tanzaku set of twelve prints Buyu mitate junishi, “Chosen Heroes for the Twelve Signs.” Based on the Chinese zodiac system of twelve animals. Shows Susa-no-o-no-Mikoto standing on a rock and observing a dragon under the waves. (Probably the eight-headed dragon he slew in Idzumo.) Published by Minatoya Kohei, c. 1840.

 

Very good impression and colour. Minimal trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Tiger from a chu-tanzaku set of twelve prints Buyu mitate junishi, “Chosen Heroes for the Twelve Signs.” Based on the Chinese zodiac system of twelve animals. Shows Kashiwade no Omi Hatebe (sic, usually Hadesu) engaging with a tiger that had killed his daughter. Published by Minatoya Kohei, c. 1840.

 

Very good impression and colour. Minimal trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Hare from a chu-tanzaku set of twelve prints Buyu mitate junishi, “Chosen Heroes for the Twelve Signs.” Based on the Chinese zodiac system of twelve animals. Shows Iga Jutaro, the elderly retainer of Soma Yoshikado, sacrificing a hare in a Buddhist temple. Published by Minatoya Kohei, c. 1840.

 

Very good impression and colour. Minimal trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Kobayashi KIYOCHIKA (1847-1915)




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A triptych, Ujigawa Kajiwara Kagesue, Sasaki Takatsuna, miju uma. Yoshitsune is informed that Kiso no Yoshinaka is entrenched behind the natural defence of the Uji river, then in full flood. Yoshitsune calls on Kajiwara Kagesue and Sayemon-no-jo Sasaki Shiro Takatsuna to make an attempt at fording the river. He gives them his best horses: Surusumi to Kagesue and Iketsuki to Takatsuna. They plunge into the river with Takatsuna, dodging the hail of arrows, arriving first. One of Kiyochika’s best designs. Published 1899.

 

Fine impression and colour. Album backing and slight vertical fold on centre panel. Signed Kiyochika.

 

Status: Sold

 

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