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Prints of the Kisokaido (Kiso Highway)

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Kunisada Image

Itabashi Todagawa Aboshi Samojiro (Itabashi, Toda River: Aboshi Samojiro)

Kunisada 40

10/1852

Given by the Friends of the Fitzwilliam with the aid of the MGC Purchase Grant Fund and the National Art Collections Fund.

Portrait of Arashi Kishisaburo III as Aboshi Samojiro, with a view of Itabashi on the Kiso Highway in the background, from the series Kiso rokuju-kyu tsugi (Sixty-nine Kiso Stations). This was one of several series by Kunisada with landscape backgrounds designed to capitalise on the success of the series of prints with views of the Tokaido published in early 1852. Three prints from the Kiso series are displayed here.

Collections Record: P.63-1999


Kunisada Image

Takamiya Taga Taisha Sasaki Genta Zaemon (Takamiya, Taga Great Shrine: Sasaki Genta Zaemon)

Kunisada 41

11/1852

Given by the Friends of the Fitzwilliam with the aid of the MGC Purchase Grant Fund and the National Art Collections Fund.

Portrait of Matsumoto Koshiro V as Sasaki Genta Zaemon, with a view of Taga Great Shrine on the Kiso Highway in the background, from the series Kiso rokuju-kyu tsugi (Sixty-nine Kiso Stations).

This was one of several series by Kunisada with landscape backgrounds designed to capitalise on the success of the series of prints with views of the Tokaido published in early 1852. Three prints from the Kiso series are displayed here.

The actor Koshiro V (1764-1838) is recognisable by his hooked nose and by the large spot above his left eyebrow. He dominated the field of villain roles.

Collections Record: P.64-1999


Kunisada Image

Unuma, Inuyama no shiro embo Dosetsu (Unuma, Distant view of Inuyama Castle: Dosetsu)

Kunisada 42

11/1852

Given by the Friends of the Fitzwilliam with the aid of the MGC Purchase Grant Fund and the National Art Collections Fund.

Portrait of Sawamura Sojuro V (formerly Suketakaya Takasuke III) as Inuyuma Dosetsu, with a view of Inuyama Castle on the Kiso Highway in the background, from the series Kiso rokuju-kyu tsugi (Sixty-nine Kiso Stations).

This was one of several series by Kunisada with landscape backgrounds designed to capitalise on the success of the series of prints with views of the Tokaido published in early 1852. Three prints from the Kiso series are displayed here.

Inuyama Dosetsu was one of the 8 samurai in Takizawa Baikin’s quasi-historical novel, Nanso Satomi Hakkenden (Biography of the Eight Dogs), issued over many years (1814-42) with illustrations by several artists including Kunisada. It tells the story of nine generations of the fictional Satomi clan. Each samurai represents a different samurai virtue, and has a name that includes the word for ‘dog’ (inu). The story was first adapted for Kabuki in 1834, and subsequent versions included Sakurada Jisuke III’s Satomi Hakkenden, produced in 1852 when this print was issued. Earlier in that year, Kuniyoshi designed a print of Dosetsu in his ‘Kiso Highway’ series.

Collections Record: P.65-1999

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Organised for Japan 2001

The Fitzwilliam Museum is especially grateful to John Carpenter, Tim Clark, Paul M. Griffith, Hideyuki Iwata and Ellis Tinios for their generous help during the preparation of this exhibition.

Funded by Japan 2001