Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




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Kanagawa Oki Nami-ura from the “Thirty-six Views of Fuji”. The set of forty-six prints published between 1823 and 1829 by Eijudo. Probably the most eulogised Japanese print and the masterpiece from the set as well as being one of the world’s great graphic images.


Medium impression. Blue outline. Very full size. Signed Zen Hokusai I-itsu hitsu.



Status: Sold

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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




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Two volumes complete Toto shokei ichiran “A View of the Famous Sights of the Eastern Capital”. Dated Kansei 12 (1800) and published by Tsutaya Jusaburo, Suwaraya Mohei and Suwaraya Ihachi, all of Edo. Original covers, hand-painted with Iris flowers, and title slips. The first edition (probably of 200 copies) was published solely by Tsutaya Jusaburo in 1800 with title Toto meisho ichiran. The example offered here was published shortly afterwards (probably also in 1800). There were also later reprints in 1815 and 1840. One of Hokusai’s best known books and featuring his best work of this period. Difficult to find in an early edition. Ex Kegan Paul Gallery.


Good condition: title slips damaged and some thumbing. A little movement of the blue pigment due to dampness, but overall a nice example of this important work. Signed on colophon Hokusai Tatsumasa.



Status: Sold




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Kitagawa UTAMARO (1753-1806)




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(Seiro Ehon) Nenju Gyoji, Yoshiwara Events or “Annals of the Green Houses”. One of Utamaro’s major books showing the annual events in the only government licensed brothel district in the city of Edo (Tokyo). Two volumes complete published Spring 1804 by Kazusaya Chusuke juo. Text by Jippensha Ikku. Original covers and title slips. Very fine copy: Fine impressions with very fine, completely unfaded colours. Slight stain affecting first few pages of text and a small wormhole within binding affecting the first few illustrations.


Covers in very good condition, some rubbing of title slips. Ex collections Theodore Duret (seals on last page of each vol.) and Tadamasa Hayashi (large square seals on first page of each vol.). Catalogue entry (lot 35) pasted onto inside of front cover: “Tres bel exemmplaire en parfait etat”. Also labels identifying each scene in French lightly attached in margin of each design. Certainly one of the finest copies extant.



Status: Sold




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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)


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An actor as a tattooed fireman from a set of seven prints Isami no Kotobuki. “A Celebration of Gallantry”. Firemen often had elaborate tattoos to show their indifference to pain. The set published by Daikin 8/1865. Rare.


Very fine impression and colour. On thick deluxe hosho. Gofun oxidised (as usual). otherwise fine condtion. Signed Gyokuo Yoshitoshi hitsu.



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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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An uncut sheet of two chuban prints showing Kobayakaw Saemon Koretaka and Saito Musashibo Benkei from the set: Wakan kidan kagami, “A Comparison of Strange Stories from China and Japan.”” The set published 1880 by Kodama Mathichi.


Very good to fine impression, colour and condition. Variegated cartouche. Signed Yoshitoshi ga.



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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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An uncut sheet of two chuban prints showing Toki Daishoro and Chinsei Hachiro Minamoto Tameasa from the set: Wakan kidan kagami, “A Comparison of Strange Stories from China and Japan.” The set published 1880 by Kodama Mathichi.


Very good to fine impression, colour and condition. Variegated cartouche. Signed Yoshitoshi ga.



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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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An uncut sheet of two chuban prints showing Tahara Fujita Hidesato and Kodan Uzaemon Naoyuki from the set: Wakan kidan kagami, “A Comparison of Strange Stories from China and Japan.” The set published 1880 by Kodama Mathichi.


Very good to fine impression, colour and condition. Variegated cartouche. Signed Yoshitoshi ga.



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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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An uncut sheet of two chuban prints showing Skura Sogo and Sakenomi Doji from the set: Wakan kidan kagami, “A Comparison of Strange Stories from China and Japan.” The set published 1880 by Kodama Mathichi.


Very good to fine impression, colour and condition. Variegated cartouche. Signed Yoshitoshi ga.



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Katsukawa SHUNSHO (1726-1792)




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The actors Ichimura Uzaemon IX and Bando Matatoro IV (hand-written in sumi) grappling together. Published c.1768. Not in Gookin.


Very good impression. Some fading. Wonderful blue ground. Very good condition. Signed Shunsho ga with Hayashi in jar-shaped outline seal.



Status: Sold

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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An uncut sheet of two chuban prints showing the Chinese generals Shin Shobu and Tobu Ribu from the set: Wakan kidan kagami, “A Comparison of Strange Stories from China and Japan.” The set published 1880 by Kodama Mathichi.


Very good to fine impression, colour and condition. Variegated cartouche. Signed Yoshitoshi ga.



Status: Sold

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839 – 1892)




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The demon Ibaraki of Rashomon ( a gate south of the Imperial Palace in Kyoto ) visits Watanabe no Tsuna disguised as an old woman to retrieve its severed arm. This famous story relates how Watanabe cut off the arm after camping out at the gate to rid the neighbourhood of the beast. ( See below on this website for Yoshitoshi’s vertical diptych of the same subject. ) From Yoshitoshi manga, “Sketches by Yoshitoshi” from a fine set of seven diptychs. Published by Kobayashi 1885-86 ( this being 1885 ).


Very fine impression of the first edition. Fine colour. Fine condition apart from one minor mark. As originally published with no backing paper, with the margins completely untrimmed ( often cut in this set ), and plenty of space for joining. Signed Yoshitoshi ga.



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Mori TETSUZAN (1775-1841)




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A makimono with six paintings of Japanese Akita pups, sumi and light colour on paper. Painted area measures 73 x 11.5 in; 185.4 x 29.4 cms. Testsuzan, a highly talented but quirky artist with a penchant for animals, was adopted by his uncle, the celebrated painter Mori Sosen. One of Okyo’s ten best pupils, he moved to Edo from Kyoto bringing the Maruyama style to the Kanto region. In very good condition, remounted in recent years with fine outer silk cover and gold-flecked paper fore and aft. Rosewood rollers. Signed Tetsuzan with his seal at the end.


Status: Sold




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Hosoda EISHI (1756-1829)




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The courtesan Shizuka of the Shizutama-ya from the set of six prints: Seiro bijin rokkasen, “Six Poems on Yoshiwara Beauties as Flowers.” One of the most beautiful sets of this period published 1794 by Eijudo. The centre cartouche has a seasonal bloom, in this case the pink which was the emblem of Shizuka. See Klaus Brandt, Hosoda Eishi, 1977, 51, no 172. Another impression was in the Popper sale cat. no 138 and the impression from the Museum fur Ostasiatische Kunst, Berlin, is illustrated in the 1974 Tokyo Exhibition catalogue, no 146.

Fine impression. Very good colour and condition. Yellow ground and mica on collar. Signed Eishi zu.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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Hyuga Province, Yudzu-no Minato from Rokuju yoshu meisho zu, “Famous Places in the sixty-Odd Provinces.” The set published by Koshimuraya Heisuke between 7/1853 and 3/1856 (this being 1856). Shows tea houses looking out over the bay.This is the extremely rare first edition.

Superb impression of the earliest state with beautiful bokashi and woodgrain showing on all blocks. Fine colour and condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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An extremely rare uncut fan from a set Shokoku meisho, “Famous Places in Various Provinces.” Musashi Yaguchi no Watashi. Although ostensibly a set of landscape prints, Hiroshige inserts popular kabuki scenes into the locations. This shows the ferryman Watashimori Tombei with his daughter O-Fune in the famous scene from the play Shinrei Yaguchi no Watashi showing them before the bell tower beside the Tama River. Published 1843-46 by Ibayakyu (Ibaya Kyubei). Another from this set is illustrated in Rupert Faulkner, Hiroshige Fan Prints, V & A, 2001, p 137, no 106 (and illustrated on the cover). Two other designs from the set are illustrated in Hiroshige Fan Prints, Unsodo, 2010, pls 132 and 133. Interestingly, the latter has identical binding holes near right edge to the example offered here. An indication that these probably came from the same sample book the publisher kept to take orders from clients. This accounts for its survival. Possibly the only impression extant.

Very fine impression and colour. Small binding holes near right edge, otherwise very good condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A beauty leaning on a cloth from a fine set of seventy numbered prints with title: Sankai medetai zu, “Excellences of Mountain and Sea.” The set compares busts of beautiful women with various products and occupations from the provinces of Japan. The inset view here shows mackerel being caught in Noto Province. The set published 1852 by Sano-ya Kihei.

 

Very fine impression and colour. Fine condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A beauty in sumptuous clothing from a fine set of seventy numbered prints with title: Sankai medetai zu, “Excellences of Mountain and Sea.” The set compares busts of beautiful women with various products and occupations from the provinces of Japan. The inset view here shows oyster collecting in Aki Province. The set published 1852 by Sano-ya Kihei.

 

Superb impression, very fine colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A beauty in sumptuous clothing from a fine set of seventy numbered prints with title: Sankai medetai zu, “Excellences of Mountain and Sea.” The set compares busts of beautiful women with various products and occupations from the provinces of Japan. The inset view here shows sap collecting for making lacquer in Koshu Province. The set published 1852 by Sano-ya Kihei.

 

Superb impression, very fine colour and condition with strong burnishing on collar. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa TOYOKUNI I ( 1769-1825 )




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An elegant triptych showing tofu being prepared and other ladies on an engawa with various fish dishes. The restaurant or inn is beside a stream which is heavily planted with flowers. Published c 1809 by Tsuruya Kinsuke.


Very good impression. Perfectly retained colour. Full size. Perfect condition. Signed Toyokuni ga.


Status: Sold

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Kitagawa UTAMARO (1752-1806)




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A beauty reading while having her hair combed from a series of Nana Komachi. The set based on the seven famous episodes in the life of the famous Heian beauty and poetess Ono no Komachi (c 825-c 900). A young woman in a loose yukata is reading a letter that is torn in two while a girl combs her hair. Published c 1805 by Ise-ya Soemon. The Ono no Komachi waka poem reads:


In this world,


Where those who live, die


And those who have died, multiply


How much longer will I,


Be around to mourn?


Fine impression. Exceptionally well preserved colour. Very good condition. On thick, deluxe hosho. Signed Utamaro hitsu.


Status: Sold

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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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An extremely fine original drawing for the set Kaidai hyakusenso, “One Hundred Aspects of Battle Chosen by Yoshitoshi.” ( Although – for whatever reason – this design was not published [ only sixty-five prints being known ]. ) A set of half-length portraits, mostly of modern soldiers and leaders drawn as historical figures of the medieval period in a semi-western style. The set published by Ohashi 7/1863-3/1869. The drawing in sumi and light colour has been restored and is in good condition and been re-laid onto Seichosen Koso Japanese paper, 14.75 in; 37.5 cms x 10.75 in; 27.25 cms. Sold “as is.”


Status: Sold

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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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A fine original drawing of Masaki Taizen Tokiyoshi from Kaidai hyakusenso, “One Hundred Aspects of Battle Chosen by Yoshitoshi.” A set of half-length portraits, mostly of modern soldiers and leaders drawn as historical figures of the medieval period in a semi-western style. The set of sixty-five prints published by Ohashi 7/1863-3/1869 ( this design published 9/1868 ). The drawing in sumi has been restored and is in good condition and been re-laid onto Seichosen Koso Japanese paper, 10.75 in; 27.25 cms x 10.5 in; 26.75 cms. Sold together with the published print in good condition. The drawing sold “as is.”


Status: Sold




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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI ( 1797-1861 )




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An original shita-e drawing illustrating the play Sumidagawa Tsui no Kagamon performed at the Ichimura-za from the 3rd of the 3rd month, 1852. The drawing has the date seal for the 2nd month, 1852. From the right it shows Sawamura Chojuro V as Suzuki Mondo; Bando Shuka I as Shiraito of the Hashimoto-ya; an unidentified actor as the clerk Zenroku; an unidentified child actor as the daughter Oyone; and Onoe Kikujiro II as Mondo’s wife Oyaso. There is also a diagonal inscription on centre and right sheets that does not seem to have any bearing on the design. Publisher’s seal Iseya Chu…, of Shiba, Shimmeimaye. Centre sheet also has Kuniyoshi’s red Kiri seal. Laid onto Japanese paper. In good condition. Sold “as is.” Rare: I am not sure if this was ever made into a print. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.


Status: Sold




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Keisai EISEN ( 1790-1848 )




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A fine original shita-e for the Bijin Tokaido which compares beauties to the Fifty-three Stations of the Tokaido, this being Minakuchi, famous for kampyo, dried gourd shavings. The set was published by Tsutaya, c early 1830s but only 40 designs are known as the government considered them a little risqué. ( The reason this design has survived. ) The set was reissued without the Station numbers and censor seal for 1846. I have not seen another such Eisen drawing. Extremely rare. Signed Keisai Eisen ga.


Status: Sold

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Kitagawa UTAMARO ( 1753-1806 )




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A young mother carrying a child on her back from a set of twelve prints Meisho fukei bijin juniso, “Twelve Beautiful Women Compared to Famous Places.” A scroll-shaped cartouche top left which was probably intended to have details of the view. However, for whatever reason, these sub-titles were removed or not printed: I have only located two designs with these descriptions. Shibui illustrates eight prints from the set, p. 119. Published c 1804, although no publisher given.


Fine impression and colour. Slight soil running down right edge, otherwise very good condition. Signed Utamaro hitsu.


Status: Sold

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Kitagawa UTAMARO ( 1753-1806 )




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An extremely rare naga-oban showing the lovers Umegawa and Chubei. The courtesan Umegawa, while tying her obi, teases Kameya Chubei with the end. He reclines beneath her looking up with admiration. The couple eloped to his native village of Ninokuchi in Yamato Province. From a set of famous lovers from Joruri plays. Published by Maruya Jimpachi, c 1800. Another ( faded ) impression from the Fitzwilliam Museum is illustrated in The Passionate Art of Kitagawa Utamaro. Asano and Clark, BM, 1995, no. 335.


Fine impression. Very good colour and condition. A beautiful print. Signed Utamaro hitsu.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNISADA II ( 1823-1880 )




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An original shita-e drawing showing a high-ranking courtesan parading below cherry blossom on Yoshiwara’s great central avenue ( Nakanocho ). From a set “Superior Women Today.” The publisher’s name is blacked out but it has the censor seal for 1861. In good condition. Sold “as is.” Rare. Signed Kunisada ga.


Status: Sold

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Kitagawa UTAMARO (1753-1806)




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3 vols. complete Ehon warai jogo, “The Laughing Drinker.” Published c.1803. This – probably Utamaro’s last erotic book – was issued in colour and, as here, in monochrome. According to Hayashi the two were published simultaneously, but with the black and white edition from separate blocks and an additional black block for the hair. Later recut editions are known.


Fine impressions. Minimal soil. Slight margin wormage at end of first volume and a little wormage at beginning of last volume. Nice original hand painted covers and original title slips. In chitsu case. A very nice copy of this well known book.



Status: Sold




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Kitagawa UTAMARO (1753-1806)




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Mishima, Province of Settsu ( or Toi ) from a set of Six Crystal ( Tama ) Rivers, Furyu mu tamagawa. The streams were noted for the purity of their water and the three girls are shown fulling cloth ( hence Toi which is the alternative name of the river and the word for beating cloth ). Published by Izumiya Ichibei, c.1803-4. This appears to be from a set – like others of Utamaro’s – that could be viewed separately or as a continuous composition. See Yoshida, Utamaro zenshu, p. 173 for another design from the set. Rare.


Fine impression and colour. Full size. One minor mark, otherwise very good condition. Signed Utamaro fude.


Status: Sold

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Katsukawa SHUNEI (1762-1819)




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Iwai Hanshiro IV in a shibaraku role, probably as Akita Jonosuke Yoshikage from the play Mieiko nori no hachi no ki performed at the Kawarazaki Theatre in the 11th month, 1791. Published by Harimaya Shinshichi. Ex Beres collection, sold Paris 2002, lot 39.


Fine impression; very good colour. Slight edge thinning and very small nick out of top margin, otherwise very good condition. Signed Shunei ga.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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An original preparatory drawing for an unpublished set: Toto Fujimi junigatsu, “Mount Fuji Viewed from the Eastern Capital Through the Twelve Months”, this being Mutsuki. Sumi on paper, c. 1850-55, 9.5 x 13.75 in; 24.5 x 35 cms. Shows a full ferry crossing the Sumida. Slight soil and centrefold, but generally very good condition. Ex collection Beres, sold Paris 2002, lot 182.


Status: Sold

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Kikugawa EIZAN (1787-1867)




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An early Eizan published c. 1810s by Shimizu. Seiro Niwaka zensei ki, “Popular Entertainment at the Niwaka Festival.” Aizuga yanagi koshizuki, with a list of entertainers. This event during the 8th month of every year in the Edo Yoshiwara involved dancing and music and girls dressed – as here, lower right figure – as men.


Superb impression and colour’ Slight browning of the thick hosho and small nick out of top left edge, otherwise very good condition. Full size. Signed Eizan hitsu.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa TOYOKUNI I (1769-1825)




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The actors Otani Tomoemon II as Iwaki Yagenji and Bando Mitsugoro II as Wakato Tomoji in the play Tsuki wa Musashino aki no sewa goto performed at the Kiriza theatre, 7/1797. One of Toyokuni’s best double bust portraits. Published by Moriya Jihei 1797. Ex Hayashi collection ( seal top left ).


Fine impression. Very good colour. Very slight centre fold and one small wormhole. Signed Toyokuni ga.



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Katsukawa SHUNSHO (1726-1792)




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The actor Ichikawa Danjuro V as Kajiwara Genta. Published c early 1780s. Illustrated in T.N.M.C. vol.1, no. 1051. A night scene. The actor deploys an umbrella and holds a lantern with the other hand. Not listed by Gookin.


Very good impression and colour. Some oxidation. Signed Shunsho ga.



Status: Sold

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Toyohara KUNICHIKA ( 1835-1900 )




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A vertical diptych showing the actor Onoe Kikugoro V in the role of Komamonoya Saijiro, “Saijiro of the haberdashery store,” fighting a giant serpent in the play Inaba Kozo ame no yobanashi performed at the Nakamura-za theatre in 11/1887. Published by Fukuda Kumajiro in 1887. Evidently the actor was swallowed whole during this scene ! An extremely rare print.


Fine impression and colour. Extensive mica on the serpent’s head and body. This is the only impression of this design I have seen retaining the publication details in the left margin ( albeit even here slightly trimmed ). Very good condition. Ample margin for joining the two sheets.  Signed Oju Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNISADA ( 1786-1864 )




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An uncut fan print showing a bust portrait of the actor Nakamura Shikan II as Matsuomaru in the scene Kuruma-biki from the play Sugawara denju tenari kagami, “Sugawara’s Secrets of Calligraphy” performed at the Nakamura-za theatre, 5/1832. This episode gives rise to one of Kabuki’s most celebrated scenes involving Matsuomaru’s two brothers and the carriage of Shihei. Extremely rare. Published 1832. Publisher not identified.


Very good impression and colour. Slight vertical crease and small edge wormage at top, otherwise good condition. Signed Gototei Kunisada ga.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNISADA ( 1786-1864 )




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The actor Nakamura Shikan II as Shoki, the demon queller. One of the nine roles in the hengemono dance Kyo kokonoe yayoi no hanamichi performed at the Nakamura-za theatre, 3/1833.Shoki ( Chin: Chung K’uei ) is said to have visited the sick T’ang dynasty emperor, Ming Huang, when he was tormented by fever demons. He recovered and Shoki told the emperor he had promised to rid the country of evil to repay the respect given him by a past emperor after he committed suicide. A favourite character in Japan, he is often depicted in red to ward off evil spirits and shown fighting demons. Paintings of Shoki were hung on Boy’s Day. Published by Yamamoto Kyubei, 1833. Rare.


Very good impression and colour. Slight soil and edge crease at left edge, otherwise good condition. Signed Gototei Kunisada ga.


Status: Sold

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Okumura TOSHINOBU (active c. 1717-1750)




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A hosoban showing an interior scene with the actor Ogino Isaburo I ( 1703-48 ), seated and playing a shamisen with a plectrum. Behind him is a courtesan, one hand on the shamisen. Toshinobu may have been the adopted son of Okumura Masanobu. Published by Soshu ( Sagami ) – ya c. 1725-30.


Good impression. Nice hand colouring with beni, mustard, yellow, blue and the addition of gum and gold powder ( bronze or brass ). Slight toning and loss of gold. Unsigned.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1864)




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A bust portrait of the famous quick-change actor Bando Mitsugoro III as Kajiwara Genta Kagetoki. Performed at the Ichimura-za Theatre in the 3rd month 1811 ( Bunka 8 ). From Kunisada’s finest set: Oatari kyoden no uchi, “Great Performances.” A set of seven prints of celebrated roles of the previous eight years selected from the Oatari kyogen, “Big Hits.” Sumptuously produced with mica grounds which had not been used for twenty years. The expressive poses hark back to similar prints by Toyokuni I and Kunimasa. Exceedingly rare, on a par with many Sharaku prints. Published by Fukusendo, c 1815. Another impression is in the Rietberg Museum, Zurich.


Fine impression. Slightly trimmed left side towards the top and repaired binding holes at top, otherwise good condition. Very good colour with the mica well retained. Signed Gototei Kunisada ga.


Status: Sold

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Keisai EISEN (1790-1848)




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An amorous couple prior to coitus. One of the three best designs from a set of twelve prints: Keisei higo, “Secret Words of a Courtesan” published c 1822-25. Although the set comes under the shunga heading, each print is an abuna-e design, without any graphic detail. Fine composition.

Fine impression and colour. Laid onto board from the original album. Small wormage and slight centre fold ( as usual ), otherwise good condition.


Status: Sold

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