Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Rat 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 Raigo Ajari at the Onjoji monastery, Miidera, turning the Buddhist scriptures into rats. Oye no Masafusa looks on in dismay. 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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Shows Tametomo’s faithful retainer Kiheiji who is left behind by mistake when Tametomo sails for Japan from the Ryukyu Islands. He throws a weighted rope the immense distance to the ship and is hauled in. The best design from Tametomo homare no jikketsu, “Ten Famous Excellences of Tametomo.” A set of ten prints published by Aritaya Seiyemon, c. 1848-51.

 

Fine impression and colour. Slight trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Tominomori Sukeemon Masakata, one of the famed Forty-seven Ronin, sword drawn, during the famous night attack on the house of Kono Moronao. The hanging bell, above, was an early intruder alarm system. (Interestingly, it’s also said that squeaks were deliberately incorporated into wooden floors for the same reason.) This unusual western-style set is also rare in having the printer’s name, Ohisa Daiihitsu, on five (including this) of the twelve prints in the set. Published by Sumiyoshiya Masagoro, 1852.

 

Fine impression and colour. Slight trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Wada Heita Tanenaga (1182-1213), short sword in hand, struggling with a giant python. He was a renowned archer and retainer of Minamoto no Yoriie. Various stories tell of how he came across the python in a cave or saved a village from its carnivorous attacks. From an untitled early set published by Yamashiroya Heisuke, c. 1845. Robinson S1f.8. A striking design and rare.

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Kamada Matahachi of Matsusaka in Ise Province killing a monstrous cat. These mountain cats – nekomata – were reputed to eat humans. Published by Tsutaya Kichizo, c. 1840. Robinson S1e.3. A wonderful and rare design.

 

 

Very good impression and colour. Repair bottom right corner and slight trimming, otherwise good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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The apparition of the Sea Monk, Umibozu, looming above the sailor Kawanaya Tokuzo. The best design from Tokaido gojusan tsui, Station 41, Kuwana. The legend has it that Tokuzo, against the advice of his peers, went to sea on the last day of the year. He subsequently experienced huge seas and the monster who demanded to know what was the most horrible thing he knew. He replied that his profession was the most horrid. Satisfied, the creature descended into the Stygian gloom and the storm abated. Published by Kojimaya Jubei, c. 1845. Illustrated in Robinson, Kuniyoshi, HMSO, 1961, no. 49.

 

 

Fine early impression with the light blue on the sea. Very good colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A triptych showing Miyamoto Mushashi (c. 1584-1645) fighting a pack of wolves in the mountains of Hakone watched by Sekiguchi Yataro seated beside a fire. Musashi was a renowned double-bladed swordsman (as seen here) and is considered the sword-saint of Japan. Published by Kiya Sojiro, 4/1861 and is probably Kuniyoshi’s last print.

 

 

Very good impression and colour. Slight creasing, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Ono no Tofu (Michikaze) in court robes learns perserverance by watching the efforts of a frog to climb a branch of a willow tree. From a set Chuko meiyo kijin den, “Stories of Remarkable Persons of Loyalty and High Reputation.” Published c. 1845 by Enshuya Matabei. Robinson S35.10.

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Six uncut double chuban sheets from a bat Chushingura set. Acts 1 to 6: Shodanme; Nidanme; Sandanme; Yodanme; Godanme; Rokudanme. Published c. 1847 by Ibaya Senzaburo. Of the utmost rarity: I cannot, at the moment, locate other examples from this set.

 

 

Fine impressions and colour. Vertical centre folds, otherwise fine condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga on each sheet.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 




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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A triptych showing Kato Kiyomasa (Watonai) attacking a huge man-eating tiger in a snowy Korean landscape. Watonai tora-gari no zu. His henchmen tackle other tigers. This is one of his best known exploits in Korea, there being two expeditions in 1592 and 1597. Published by Yamashiroya Jimbei, c 1846. Robinson T183. A fine and rare design.

 

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

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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The priest Nichiren standing on the rocky promontory at Reizan in Kamakura and having his prayers for rain answered. The event occurred in 1271. His disciples surround him and protect him from the deluge with a large umbrella. Bunei hachi Kamakura Reizan-ga-saki uki. The second best design from Koso [ Nichiren ] goichidai ryakuzu, “Illustrated Abridged Biography of the Founder.” Nichiren ( 1222 – 1282 ) was the founder of the Buddhist Nichiren sect ( Nichiren shu – Kuniyoshi being a follower ) and indeed the set of ten prints may have been commissioned to mark the 550th anniversary of his death. Published by Iseya Rihei c 1831.

 

Fine impression and colour. Small repaired binding holes in right margin, otherwise fine condition. Full size with ample room on top border for the umbrella which protrudes beyond the border and is notorious for being trimmed. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Tametomo at the age of thirteen catching the arrows shot at him by two of the Emperor’s guard in a competition with Shonagon Nyudo Shinsei. From a set: Tametomo homare no jikketsu, “Ten Famous Excellencies of Tametomo.” The set published by Aritaya Seiyemon, c 1848-51.

 

Extremely fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Takeda Shingen seated and holding a war-fan and rosary and fully armoured. From a series: Meiko hyaku yu den, “Stories of a Hundred Heroes of High Renown” published by Idzumiya Ichibei, 1843-4.

 

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

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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The Shin Yoshiwara from a Toto meisho “Famous Views of the Eastern Capital” set of 10 prints published by Kagaya Kichibei, c. 1831. The “Shin” or “New” Yoshiwara was so named after its relocation after a fire in 1657. It can be seen in the distance. In the foreground are late night travellers on the Nihon embankment. The scene is dominated by the moon and its huge halo. The set uses Europeanised elements, most evident in his landscape prints as well as a few other series and some surimono. Extremely rare.

 

Fine impression and colour. Another state has a line printed around the moon. The green border intact which is rare on this set as it is often trimmed, sometimes completely. Slight soil, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Minamoto Tametomo (1139-70) decapitating Yamaotoko from a set of ten prints: Tametomo homare no jikketsu, “Ten Famous Glories of Tametomo.” A great archer (it being said that his left arm was four inches longer than his right), and a wild and colourful character. The story shown here relates how Tametomo, while exiled to the island of Izu Oshima, discovers a nearby island inhabited by creatures with a demon-like countenance, red faces and long red hair hanging over their foreheads. He eventually subjugates the devils and is regarded as a king by the islanders. Published by Aritaya Seiemon, 1847-50.

 

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

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1798-1861)




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Satomi Jibu-no-taifu Yoshizane, a daimyo in control of Takita Castle from Satomi Hakkenden, the eight heroes of Bakin’s novel Hakkenden. Published by Mikawa-ya Tetsugoro, c 1849-51. See the Kunichika triptych of the same subject on this current selection.


Very good impression, colour and condition. Signed Ichiryusai Kuniyoshi ga.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1798-1861)




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Nitta Tadatsune encountering the goddess of Mount Fuji and her dragon in a cavern with numerous stalactites and a fast flowing river and waterfall. She complimented Tadatsune on his courage while his compatriots were stricken with terror. Statues of the goddess Kwannon ( Chin: Guanyin ) are often found in caves. Published by Tsuji-ya Yasubei, c. 1844. Robinson T143. A fine design.


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


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Araki Matayemon standing, examining his sword from Honcho kendo ryaku den, “Abridged Stories of Our Country’s Swordsmanship.” The set published by Kadzusaya Iwazo in c 1845-6.

 

Extremely fine impression, colour and condition. Solid yellow ground. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Yoshioka Kanefusa defending himself in an attack by police from Honcho kendo ryaku den, “Abridged Stories of Our Country’s Swordsmanship.” The set published by Kadzusaya Iwazo in c 1845-6.

 

Extremely fine impression, colour and condition. Solid yellow ground. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A bust portrait of Goshaku Somegoro playing a shakuhachi from the series Kuniyoshi moyo shofuda tsuketari genkin otoko, “ Men of Ready Money with True Labels Attached, Kuniyoshi Fashion.” The title derived from a contemporary kabuki play Shofuda tsuki kongen kusazuri. Poem above by Umeya. Robinson S40.3. Published by Ibaya Kyubei, 1845.


Fine impression and colour. Slight trimming and retains original album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A bust portrait of the sumo wrestler Nuregami Chogoro holding a pipe from the series Kuniyoshi moyo shofuda tsuketari genkin otoko, “ Men of Ready Money with True Labels Attached, Kuniyoshi Fashion.” The title derived from a contemporary kabuki play Shofuda tsuki kongen kusazuri. Poem above by Rosho. Robinson S40.5. Published by Ibaya Kyubei, 1845.


Fine impression and colour. Slight trimming and retains original album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Sasaki Ganryu standing, in profile, with clenched fist, from Honcho kendo ryaku den, “Abridged Stories of Our Country’s Swordsmanship.” The set published by Kadzusaya Iwazo in c 1845-6.

 

Extremely fine impression, colour and condition. Solid yellow ground. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1798 – 1861)




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Tadatsune killing the monstrous wild boar watched by Yoritomo and his entourage. Published c 1842-3. Robinson T99.


Fine impression and colour. Minor trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.



Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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India from Sangoku yoko zue, “The Magic Fox of the Three Countries [China, India, Japan].” A set with strong western elements. Here showing Kwayo-fujin (the fox) having shot a St. Sebastian-like figure in the eye watched by King Hansoku. Both attired in exotic and archaic western garments and head pieces. Also western influences in the sky, trees and architecture. The set published by Iseya Chusuke and Echizenya Hachiyemon, c 1849-50. Unidentified collector’s seal bottom left. Rare.

 

Fine impression with strong woodgrain. Very good colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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The warrior Hakumenrokun Teitenju in full armour levering a mass of rock with an iron bar. 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 S2.20. There is another version of this design with yellow rocks and the sky a solid blue.

 

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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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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The warrior Chusenko Teitokuson driving his sword into a huge snake. 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 S2.13. One of the best designs from this impressive set.

 

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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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1798-1861)




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An early design without series title showing Nikki Gennosuke in pouring rain fending off wild wolves while suddenly observing the apparition of a dead man behind him. Published by Tsuta-ya Kichizo, c 1840. Robinson S1e.2. A fine and rare design.


Very good impression and colour. Slight trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ch-o-ro Kuniyoshi ga.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1798-1861)




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An uncut fan print, Funa Benkei, “Benkei in a Boat.” Shows Yoshitsune’s boat fleeing from Kyoto and his brother Minamoto no Yorimoto. The boat encounters the ghosts of the slain Heike clan who rise from the waves. However, Benkei, by praying to the gods, is able to avert disaster and calm the storm. Benkei is seen with his rosary at the prow of the boat. Of the utmost rarity. Seemingly only two other impressions known: One illustrated in Kuniyoshi, Nikkei Inc, 2011, no. 47 and the other in Kuniyoshi, Juzo Suzuki, Heibonsha Ltd, no. 102. (The V. & A. copy.) These impressions also illustrated elsewhere. Published c. 1840.

 

Fine impression and colour. Restored binding holes at left edge and minimal soil at corners. Probably the best example extant. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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An extremely rare diptych, Shoki-san jaki ni sokko, “Shoki-San, Quick-Acting Medicine to Remove Evil Spirits.” Images of Shoki were used to ward off evil spirits and illness, especially during the Boys’ Festival. Published 1858 by Enshuya Hikobei.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi fude with Yutaka seal.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1798 – 1861)




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Nitta Tadatsune encountering the goddess of Mount Fuji and her dragon in a cavern with numerous stalactites and a fast flowing river and waterfall. Published by Tsuji-ya Yasubei c 1844. Robinson T143.


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



Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1865)



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Narukami Shonin, a wicked priest, from the play Narukami. One of a set Toyokuni kigo kijutsu kurabe, “A Contest of Magic Scenes by Toyokuni.” The series published by Hiranoya Shinzo, 1862. The set is known for its deluxe printing.

 

Superb impression and colour. Fine condition. Signed Kio Toyokuni hitsu (77 year’s old).

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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The Empress Jingo Kogo, sumptuously attired, sitting on a rock with two Imperial Jewels above her. She is supposed to have invaded Korea although there is some debate about this. From a set Meiko hyaku yu den, “Stories of a Hundred Heroes of High Renown.” The series published by Idzumi-ya Ichibei, 1843-44.

 

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

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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Choko and Cho-Un fighting on a hillside from a set Tsuzoku Sangokushi yeiyu no ichi-nin, “Heroes of the Popular History of the Three Kingdoms, One by One.” Published by Joshuya Kinzo, c. 1836.

 

Fine impression. Slight fading of red. Full size. Slight centre fold, otherwise good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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Kaidomaru felling a tengu during practise with wooden swords from a set Honcho kendo ryaku den, “Abridged Stories of our Country’s Swordsmanship.” The series published by Kadzusa-ya Iwazo, c. 1845-6.

 

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

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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An early triptych showing Shutendoji’s palace on Mount Oyeyama, Oyeyama Shotendoji shuzui no zu. Raiko (Minamoto no Yorimitsu) is charged by the Emperor Murakami with killing the evil Shutendoji who terrorizes the neighbourhood. He and his retainers infiltrate the castle and ply Shutendoji and his ogrish band with sake and dance for them. Eventually Shutendoji is so intoxicated he has to be carried to bed, whereupon Raiko and his followers attack and decapitate Shutendoji. This is the episode most depicted with the head flying through the air. Published by Daikokuya Heikichi, c. 1832. Robinson T21. Rare.

 

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

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A bust portrait of Teranishi Kanshin holding a fan from the series Kuniyoshi moyo shofuda tsuketari genkin otoko, “ Men of Ready Money with True Labels Attached, Kuniyoshi Fashion.” The title derived from a contemporary kabuki play Shofuda tsuki kongen kusazuri. Poem above by Gosonoya of Ise. Robinson S40.7. Published by Ibaya Kyubei, 1845.


Fine impression and colour. Slight trimming and retains original album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.


Status: Sold

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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Princess Chujo (Chujo-hime) from the set Chuko meiyo kijin den, “Stories of Remarkable Persons of Loyalty and High Reputation.” Published by Iseya Ichiemon or Enshuya Matabei (this design) 1845. Robinson S35.17. Abandoned by her stepmother, she is rescued by the nuns of Taima-dera, becomes a nun, and is credited with the invention of embroidery. She is shown here with a spinning wheel (forming a mandela around her head) and looking out at a landscape with a rainbow.

 

Very fine impression and colour. Very slight crinkling and trimmed close, otherwise fine condition. Signed Cho-o-ro Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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Fujiwara no Yasumasa from the set Chuko meiyo kijin den, “Stories of Remarkable Persons of Loyalty and High Reputation.” Published by Iseya Ichiemon or Enshuya Matabei (this design) 1845. Robinson S35.11. A renowned poet and flautist, he escapes being attacked by the robber Hakamadare Yasusuke who is mesmerized by the music.

 

Superb impression and colour. Very slight crinkling and trimmed close, otherwise fine condition. Signed Cho-o-ro Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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The sculptor Hidari Jingoro from the set Chuko meiyo kijin den, “Stories of Remarkable Persons of Loyalty and High Reputation.” Published by Iseya Ichiemon or Enshuya Matabei (this design) 1845. Robinson S35.2. Although possibly fictitious, there are nevertheless many sculptures around Japan attributed to him. So accomplished was he that his pieces often came to life, as here, where a dragon and two lions chase the pursuers of his Lord’s wife.

 

Superb impression and colour. Very slight crinkling and trimmed close, otherwise fine condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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Shidzuka-gozen or Lady Shidzuka from the set Chuko meiyo kijin den, “Stories of Remarkable Persons of Loyalty and High Reputation.” Published by Iseya Ichiemon or Enshuya Matabei (this design) 1845. Robinson S35.12. She was a renowned 12th century shirabyoshi (court) dancer who achieved fame after 100 Buddhist monks and 99 other dancers failed to bring much needed rain.

 

Superb impression and colour. Very slight crinkling and trimmed close, otherwise fine condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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