Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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A vertical diptych showing the actor Onoe Kikugoro V as the archvillain and sorcerer Nikki Danjo emanating in a cloud of smoke from his alter ego – the giant rat. He holds in his mouth the scroll containing the names of the conspirators given to Masaoka which he has purloined. This is one of the great scenes in Kabuki from the play Meibuku Sendai hagi, “Precious Incense and the Bush Clover of Sendai.” Kikugoro rises through a trapdoor (suppon) which is on the hanamachi leading out from the Kabuki stage. Published by Fukuda Kumajiro, 1887. Rare.

 
 

Very good impression and colour. Heavy oxidation, otherwise very good condition. Signed Toyohara Kunichika fude.

 
 

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    Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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    The actor Otani Tomoemon V as Danshichi Kurobei, a fishmonger and an Osaka otokodate, in the drama Natsu matsuri Naniwa kagami, “Summer Festival: Mirror of Osaka.” From an untitled set of large-head actor portraits published by Gusokuya Kahei, 1869. Based on actual events, the scene depicted here is from Act VII of the play where the heavily tattooed Danshichi has murdered his wife’s father, the untrustworthy Mikawaya Giheiji, and is pouring water from a bucket over himself to wash off the mud from the murder scene. Probably the best design from the set.

     
     

    Fine impression and colour. Very good condition. Signed Kunichika hitsu.

     
     

    Status: Available

     
     

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      Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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      The actor Kawarasaki Sansho (later Ichikawa Danjuro IX) in the role of Sato Masakiyo in the Momoyama Goten Ohiroma scene from Momoyama Monogatari performed at the Ichimura-za Theatre, 8/1869. From a set of at least 22 prints published by Gusokuya Kahei, 1869. Kunichika produced some fine triptychs (horizontal and vertical) as well as this fine set.

       
       

      Fine impression and colour. Slightly trimmed, otherwise very good condition. Signed Kunichika hitsu.

       
       

      Status: Available

       
       

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        Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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        The actor Otani Tomoemon V playing the role of Ono no Michikaze (also read as Ono no Tofu) in the play Ono no Tofu Aoyagi Suzuri performed at the Ichimura-za Theatre, 5/1869. From a set of at least 22 prints published by Gusokuya Kahei, 1869. Kunichika produced some fine triptychs (horizontal and vertical) as well as this fine set.

         
         

        Fine impression and colour. Very good condition. Signed Kunichika ga.

         
         

        Status: Available

         
         

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          Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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          The actor Nakamura Shikan IV as Ishikawa Hachizaemon in the play Chuko musashi no abumi staged at the Nakamura-za Theatre in 4/1869. From a set of at least 22 prints published by Gusokuya Kahei, 1869. Kunichika was a hack artist who nevertheless produced some fine triptychs (horizontal and vertical) and this fine set of actor bust portaits.

           
           

          Fine impression and colour. Minor edge soil, otherwise very good condition. Signed Kunichika hitsu.

           
           

          Status: Available

           
           

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            Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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            The actor Seki Sanjuro III as Saruta Hiko in the play Yoinakatomi Kiyome no mikagura staged at the Ichimura-za Theatre 8/1869. From a set of at least 22 prints published by Gusokuya Kahei, 1869. Kunichika was a hack artist who nevertheless produced some fine triptychs (horizontal and vertical) and this fine set of actor bust portaits.

             
             

            Fine impression with extensive blind-printing on the beard and hair. Fine colour. Slight foxing and crease in left margin, otherwise very good condition. Signed Kunichika hitsu.

             
             

            Status: Available

             
             

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              Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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              The actor Nakamura Sagisuke in the role of the samurai attendant Kanji (Chugen Kanji) in the play Kichisama mairu yukari no otozure which was premiered at the Nakamura-za Theatre 15/7/1869. From a set of at least 22 prints published by Gusokuya Kahei, 1869. Kunichika was a hack artist who nevertheless produced some fine triptychs (horizontal and vertical) and this fine set of actor bust portaits.

               
               

              Fine impression and colour. Slight trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Kunichika hitsu.

               
               

              Status: Available

               
               

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                Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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                A cho-oban (20 x 6.75 inches) print showing beauties fishing. The top figure has caught a crayfish. Each design interprets a haiku poem in red, top right. A set of 6 prints published by Matsui Eikichi, 1893. Rare.

                 

                 

                Fine impression and colour. Slight creasing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                 

                 

                Status: Available

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                  Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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                  The actor Suketakaya Takasuke IV as Sakuramaru from a fine set of prints showing actors glimpsed through their dressing room sliding doors, prior to going on stage. Their figures partly silhouetted as are their assistants, here aiding the actor with his sword. From a set Gakuya nikai kage no hyoban, “Popularity of the Upstairs Dressing Room.” The set published by Takagawa Fusajiro, 1883.

                   

                   

                  Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                   

                   

                  Status: Available

                   

                   

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                    Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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                    The actor Onoe Kikugoro V as Hisayoshi from a fine set of prints showing actors glimpsed through their dressing room sliding doors, prior to going on stage. Their figures partly silhouetted as are their assistants, here aiding the actor with his costume. From a set Gakuya nikai kage no hyoban, “Popularity of the Upstairs Dressing Room.” The set published by Takagawa Fusajiro, 1883.

                     

                     

                    Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                     

                     

                    Status: Available

                     

                     

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                      Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                      The actor Onoe Taganojo II from a fine set of prints showing actors glimpsed through their dressing room sliding doors, prior to going on stage. Their figures partly silhouetted as are their assistants, here aiding the actor with his headpiece. From a set Gakuya nikai kage no hyoban, “Popularity of the Upstairs Dressing Room.” The set published by Takagawa Fusajiro, 1883.

                       

                      Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                       

                      Status: Available

                       

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                        Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                        The devoted wife Sayohime from Thirty-six Good and Evil Beauties.” She is seen on a rocky outcrop watching her husband Otomo Sadehiko sail away to war. Legend has it that she wept for so long that she eventually turned to stone. The figure being referred to as Bofu-seki, “Weeping-wife Stone.” Published by Fukuda Kumajiro, 1876.

                        Very fine impression of the first edition . Small backed wormhole top margin and small thinned area, otherwise fine condition. Signed Yasohachi Kunichika hitsu.

                        Status: Sold

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                          Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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                          Uba Shizu of Nabeshima praying under a waterfall from a set Zen’aku sanuroku bijin, “Thirty-six Good and Evil Beauties.” The set published by Sawamuraya Seikichi, 1876.

                           

                           

                          Very fine impression and colour with splashed gofun. Very good condition. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                           

                           

                          Status: Sold

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                            Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                            Otoyo no Kata from Zen-aku sanjuroku bijin, “Thirty-six Good and Evil Beauties.” The set published in 1876 by Morimoto Janzaburo.

                             

                            Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                             

                            Status: Sold

                             

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                              Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                              Ichikawa Danjuro IX as the Chinese pirate from Fuzhou (Fukushu kaizoku) shichiso kanteirei from the set: Shiranui monogatari kanto no hitori. Shiranui monogatari was a picture-book published in three parts from 1849 onwards, written by three authors: Ryukatei Tanekazu, Ryutei Tanehiko II, and Ryusuitei Tanekiyo, with illustrations by Toyokuni III. In 1853 it became the subject of a popular Kabuki play. Published by Kobayashi Tetsujiro, 1879. A rare set.

                               

                              Very fine impression, colour and condition with extensive burnishing. Signed Toyohara Kunichika ga.

                               

                              Status: Sold

                               

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                                Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                Onoe Kikugoro V as Aoyagi Harunosuke Toshitada holding a large bronze bell from the set: Shiranui monogatari kanto no hitori. Shiranui monogatari was a picture-book published in three parts from 1849 onwards, written by three authors: Ryukatei Tanekazu, Ryutei Tanehiko II, and Ryusuitei Tanekiyo, with illustrations by Toyokuni III. In 1853 it became the subject of a popular Kabuki play. Published by Kobayashi Tetsujiro, 1879. A rare set.

                                 

                                Very fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Toyohara Kunichika ga.

                                 

                                Status: Sold

                                 

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                                  Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                  A fine set of prints showing actors preparing backstage for their performances. Haiyu gakuya no omokage, “Images of Actors in the Green Rooms.” Here Ichikawa Danjuro IX is shown in dressing gown being fanned by an attendant (off picture). Published 1888 by Sasaki Toyokichi.

                                  Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                                   

                                  Status: Sold

                                   

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                                    Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                    A fine set of prints showing actors preparing backstage for their performances. Haiyu gakuya no omokage , “Images of Actors in the Green Rooms.” Here Nakamura Fukusuke IV is shown preparing to put on makeup while an attendant (off picture) holds up what is presumably a supporter’s banner. Published 1888 by Sasaki Toyokichi.

                                    Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                                     

                                    Status: Sold

                                     

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                                      Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)


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                                      A triptych of the famous scene from Meiboku Sendai hagi “The Disputed Succession” showing Kawarasaki Gonjuro I as Arajishi Otokonosuke and Onoe Kikugoro V as Yoshio. The rat with the scroll of conspirators is attacked, escapes, and reappears through a trapdoor in its true guise as the evil Nikki Danjo. Published by Tsujiokaya Bunsuke, 1869.

                                       

                                      Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Kunichika hitsu.

                                       

                                      Status: Sold

                                       

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                                        Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                        A vertical oban triptych showing Onoe Kikugoro V as Okiku’s ghost, above, and Ichikawa Danjuro IX as Asayama Tessan from the play Sarayashiki kesho no sugatami, “Mansion of Plates” performed at the Kabuki-za 1892. A famous ghost story with different versions. The gist is that Okiku was a maid at the mansion of the samurai Aoyama Tessan. He attempts to seduce her without luck and as an act of revenge hides one of ten valuable Dutch plates, claiming that she has stolen one. In remorse, she drowns herself in a neighbour’s well. Her ghost appears every night, sobbing and groaning, eventually causing Aoyama to go insane. Published by Fukuda Kumajiro, 1892.

                                         

                                        Superb impression, colour and condition. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                                         

                                        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, 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. Fine condition with the publication details intact on the left margin. Ample room for joining the two sheets. Signed Oju Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                                           

                                          Status: Sold

                                           

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                                            Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                            A dai-oban print showing the actor Ichikawa Danjuro IX as Minister Kibi in the play Kibi Daijin Shina monogatari, “Minister Kibi, Tale of China.” The play centres on the historical minister Kibi no Makibi who joined a mission to the Tang Court in China in 716. He is supposed to have brought back to Japan the game of go, embroidery, and the secrets of the Chinese almanac. Published by Gusokuya Kahai, 1875.

                                            Fine impression with gauffrage and extensive burnishing to Kibi’s black garment. Fine colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition, untrimmed. Signed Oju Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                                            Status: Sold

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                                              Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                              A vertical triptych showing the actor Ichikawa Udanji I as the ghost of Sogo’s wife (Sogo tsuma no rei) carrying off Nakamura Kangoro XII as Yamazumi Goheita in the play Sakura Sogo den performed at the Haruki-za Theatre, 3/1893. Published by Fukuda Kumajiro.

                                               

                                              Fine impression and colour. Slight toning and creasing, otherwise very good condition. Signed Osetsu Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                                               

                                              Status: Sold

                                               

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                                                Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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                                                A fine triptych showing the actor Ichikawa Danjuro IX in Shibaraku role. Kabuki juhachiban no uchi: shibaraku, “The Eighteen Famous Kabuki Plays: Shibaraku.” Published by Fukuda Kumajiro, 8/1895. Illustrated on the front cover of Time Present and Time Past: Images of a Forgotten Master: Toyohara Kunichika (1835-1900). Amy Reigle Newland. Hotei publishing, 1999.

                                                 

                                                 

                                                Fine impression and colour. Album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Oju Kunichika hitsu.

                                                 

                                                 

                                                Status: Sold

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                                                  Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                  A full-on image of the actor Ichikawa Danjuro IX as Kamakura Gongoro Kagemasa in the Shibaraku play with the voluminous costume associated with the role. Title: Kabuki juhachiban no uchi/Shibaraku, “The Eighteen Famous Kabuki Plays:Shibaraku.” Kunichika made a number of prints, single, diptych and triptych, of this subject but this particular design is rare. Published by Mizuno Asajiro, c. 1895.

                                                   

                                                  Very good impression and colour. Background partly blind-printed. Slight trimming losing publishing information on left edge of last sheet and slight soil. Otherwise good condition. Signed Oju Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

                                                   

                                                  Status: Sold

                                                   

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                                                    Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                    A diptych showing the actor Otani Tomoemon V as the firefighter Kurikara Denji in the play Fuji to mimasu suehiro soga performed at the Morita-za Theatre, 2/1866. Interestingly, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston has the original playbill, acc. no. 11.28195. Firemen were usually heavily tattooed demonstrating their masculinity. Published by Otaya Takichi, 3/1866.

                                                     

                                                    Very good impression and colour. The pigments have oxidised somewhat giving a nice patina. Very good condition. Signed Kunichika fude.

                                                     

                                                    Status: Sold

                                                     

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                                                      Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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                                                      The actor Sawamura Tossho II in the Okazaki no ba, “Okazaki Scene” from Okazaki no neko, “The Cat of Okazaki.” This episode from the famous play takes place in an old temple at Okazaki on the Tokaido. An old cat witch haunts the temple attacking young women. Published by Daikokuya Kinzaburo, c. mid 1860s. Rare.

                                                       

                                                       

                                                      Very good impression, colour and condition. Signed Kunichika hitsu.

                                                       

                                                       

                                                      Status: Sold

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                                                        Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                        An original hanshita-e drawing showing actors in different roles; above as a warrior and beneath in an onnagata role. Sumi and red on thin paper. Image size 12.5 x 6 in, 31.5 x 15 cms. . For a series of designs contained within a hagoita ( wooden paddles used to play the New Year hanetsuki game ). Good condition.

                                                        Status: Sold

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                                                          Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                          An original hanshita-e drawing possibly showing Kagekiyo breaking prison. Sumi on thin paper. Image size 13 x 6.5 in, 33 x 16.5 cms. . For a series of designs contained within a hagoita ( wooden paddles used to play the New Year hanetsuki game ). Numerous indications for the printer for the colours to be used. One hole, otherwise good condition.

                                                          Status: Sold

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                                                            Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                            An original hanshita-e drawing probably showing Danjuro IX as Benkei. Sumi with light touches of pink and blue on thin paper, image size 12.75 x 6.5 in, 32.5 x 16.5 cms. For a series of designs contained within a hagoita ( wooden paddles used to play the New Year hanetsuki game ). In good condition.

                                                            Status: Sold

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                                                              Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                              An original hanshita-e drawing probably showing Benkei and Yoshitsune on Gojo Bridge. Sumi on thin paper, image size 14.5 x 6.25 in, 37 x 16 cms. For a series of designs contained within a hagoita ( wooden paddles used to play the New Year hanetsuki game ). Some creasing.

                                                              Status: Sold

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                                                                Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                                An original hanshita-e drawing showing an actor in an onnagata role. Sumi on thin paper. Image size 12.5 x 6 in, 31.5 x 15 cms. . For a series of designs contained within a hagoita ( wooden paddles used to play the New Year hanetsuki game ). Numerous indications for the printer on the colours to be used. Good condition.

                                                                Status: Sold

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                                                                  Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                                  An original hanshita-e drawing showing three actors in various roles. Sumi on thin paper. Image size 12.5 x 6 in, 31.5 x 15 cms. For a series of designs contained within a hagoita ( wooden paddles used to play the New Year hanetsuki game ). Paper separated at top, otherwise good condition.

                                                                  Status: Sold

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                                                                    Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                                    An original hanshita-e drawing showing actors in different roles; the one above as a warrior, and beneath as a commoner. Sumi and touches of red on thin paper. Image size 14 x 6 in, 35.5 x 15 cms. . For a series of designs contained within a hagoita ( wooden paddles used to play the New Year hanetsuki game ). Good condition.

                                                                    Status: Sold

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                                                                      Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                                      An original hanshita-e drawing showing an actor with sword raised and voluminous red hair. Sumi and red on thin paper, image size 11.5 x 5.75 in, 30 x 14.5 cms. For a series of designs contained within a hagoita ( wooden paddles used to play the New Year hanetsuki game ). Numerous indications for the printer on the colours to be used. In good condition.

                                                                      Status: Sold

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                                                                        Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                                        Suketakaya Takasuke IV as Inuzuka Shino on the roof of the pavilion Horyukaku fighting Kenpachi. A fine set based on Bakin’s Hakkenden, entitled “A Parody of the Hakkenden” published by Fukuda Kumajiro, 1883. A rare series that shows, even at this late date, there are flashes of brilliance.

                                                                        Very fine impression of the first de-luxe edition with silver and beautiful bokashi. Fine colour and condition. Full size. Signed Yasohachi Kunichika hitsu.

                                                                        Status: Sold

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                                                                          Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                                          Nakamura Shikan II as Inuyama Dosetsu battling with Inukai Kenpachi. A fine set based on Bakin’s Hakkenden entitled “A Parody of the Hakkenden” published by Fukuda Kumajiro, 1883. A rare series that shows, even at this late date, there are flashes of brilliance.

                                                                          Very fine impression of the first de-luxe edition with extensive burnishing and silver. Fine colour and condition. Full size. Signed Yasohachi Kunichika hitsu.

                                                                          Status: Sold

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                                                                            Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                                            Aoi, Chapter 9, from Genji goju-shi jo, a parody series of the tale of Genji ( ie the 54 Chapters of Genji Monogatari, a 10th century romance by Murasaki-Shikibu. ) Shows ama, female divers, collecting awabi, “abalone”, on the coast of Ise. This is the best design from the set and was a popular subject with ukiyo-e artists as the women were considered quite risqué for obvious reasons. Published by Takekawa Seikichi, Meiji 17 ( 1884 ).

                                                                            Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Toyohara Kunichika fude.

                                                                            Status: Sold

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                                                                              Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                                              A wonderful album of 12 spontaneous drawings to show his mastery of the usual gamut of subjects covered by ukiyoe artists: Shibaraku; The Wind God; Daikoku; Asahina; bijin sleeping; Daruma; Tametomo ?; Hotei; a monkey with it’s lead; a storm dragon; a peasant girl watching a cuckoo against the moon, and Kagekiyo breaks prison. This is the sort of item that, if one were lucky, could be bought occasionally in Japan years ago, but which seems to have disappeared. It also reveals how good Kunichika could be. An artist who carried on the traditional woodblock form into the Meiji period. Sumi and full colour on paper, 6.5 x 7.75 inches; 16.6 x 19.8 cms. Some slight repaired wormage, otherwise good condition. Guaranteed at the end as by Kunichika by Eisai Fukunaga Kimiyoshi and dated Taisho 13 ( 1924 )

                                                                              Status: Sold




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                                                                                Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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                                                                                A vigorous original preparatory drawing by Kunichika for an aiban shunga print. Sumi on thin tissue with extensive pentimenti ( giving an alternative position for the female ). Such shunga drawings are rare.

                                                                                Status: Sold

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