Kunichika Toyohara, Kabuki, Traditional Theatre, Actors

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Original Japanese woodblock print.

Artist: Kunichika Toyohara (1835-1900)
Title: Kabuki play, Shinbutai Iwao no Kusunoki
Publisher: Horinoya Tasuke
Date: 1874
Size: (L)24.1 x 35.8 (C)24 x 35.8 (R)24 x 35.7 cm
Condition: Paper residue on the back.

One of the last great masters of ukiyo-e, Kunichika was inspired by the plays, actors and customs of kabuki theatre. His colourful prints are records of a long lost, decadent underworld of Edo. Since the beginning of the Meiji period, he made a large number of triptychs depicting half length portraits of a single actor on a big format and in luxurious style, applying original composition in this new design of dynamic prints. He got acclaimed for this work that improved the quality of half-length portraits and because those prints became known by their innovative composition, he succeeded in obtaining the full supremacy in the field of yakusha-e (actor prints).

His portrayal of human faces have some traces of his previous studies in hagoita style painting and can appear to be cold and hard, depending on the perspective, but it became a feature characteristic of his style.

More Information
Print Format Triptych
Artist Name Kunichika Toyohara
Title Kabuki play, Shinbutai Iwao no Kusunoki
Subject Kabuki
Dimensions (L)24.1 x 35.8 (C)24 x 35.8 (R)24 x 35.7 cm
Condition Report Paper residue on the back.