Kuniyoshi Utagawa, Hosokute, Horikoshi Dairyo, Sixty-nine Stations of the Kisokaido
Artist: Kuniyoshi Utagawa (1798-1861)
Title: Hosokute, Horikoshi Dairyo
Series title: Sixty-nine Stations of the Kisokaido
Publisher: Yawataya Sakujiro
Size: 24.5 x 36.4 cm
Original Japanese woodblock print.
The 17th century Lord Hotta of Sakura in Shimosa Province oppressed the peasants so cruelly that at last their leader, a man named Sogo, traveled to Edo and presented a petition to the shogun asking for help. He did so knowing that it was strictly forbidden for a commoner to approach the shogun directly, and that not only he but his entire family would be executed as a result of his brave action.
The scene in this print takes place after the hero's death, when the evil lord is tormented by the ghosts of his victims. His purple headband is a kabuki convention indicating physical and mental illness. A ghostly figure kneels before the lord, begging him to change his ways, and the landscape painted on the folding screen behind him has shifted into eerie shapes of skulls and the ghost of the martyred Sogo who was executed by crucifixion.
|Print Format||Oban (Vertical)|
|Subject||Samurai & Male, Ghosts & Religion|
|Dimensions||24.5 x 36.4 cm|
|Condition Report||Backing, minor creases.|