Kunichika: Nikki Danjo Escaping Via Rat Magic (Sold)

  • Sold.

Artist: Toyohara Kunichika (1835-1900)
Title: Evil Magician Nikki Danjo Using Rat Magic to Escape in a Cloud of Smoke
Date: 1888

The actor Onoe Kikugoro  V as Nikki Danjo ascending a cloud of smoke, left, and Ichikawa Sadanji as Arajishi Otoko no suke, center. Danjo clutches an important scroll in his mouth, which he has stolen and intends to use for negative ends. The actor wears a mark on his forehead where he was struck by Arajishi when he was still in rat form. Now the evil magician is transforming from his rat form into his magician form and departing in his smoke-colored costume into a cloud of smoke. It is interesting to note that the rat looks very much like an actor wearing a rat costume; one can even see a mesh panel at the chin that the actor would be able to peer out of. This is the climax of the famous “Under the Floor” scene from the play Meiboku Sendai hagi, a play based at least a little bit on real events concerning the troubles of the Date clan in the 1660s. Beautifully printed, with burnishing on the eye of the rat.

Condition: Excellent impression and color; very good condition. Some pigment transfer on right margin and minor trimming.
Dimensions: ôban triptych (36 x 72 cm)
Signature: Toyohara Kunichika hitsu