Kunisada: Horse Coming to Life from a Painting by the Painter Motonobu

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Artist: Utagawa Kunisada (1786-1865)
Title: Bando Mitsugoro as the Ancient Court Painter Kohogen Motonobu, Horse Come to Life from a Votive Painting, Sanno Festival Float in Group 2. Number Se. 
Series: Edo no hana meisho-e (Flowers of Edo and Views of Famous Places)江戸の花名勝会

Date: 1863

We see Bando Mitsugoro holding an ink brush in his mouth and a votive painting with the empty silhouette of a horse in his hand. From the painting emanates the horse, which is seen galavanting upper left beneath cherry trees. Lower right is the monkey figure float for the Sanno Festival. 

The term “flowers of Edo” (Edo no hana) was often used to refer to the very common occurrence of fires. The title panel shows the lanterns and identifying standard (matoi) for the brigades of firefighters (hikeshi) assigned to each district, and the title names the brigade, its group, and its district, followed by the kabuki scene chosen to match it.

Condition: Very good impression, color and condition. 
Dimensions: ôban (35.8 x 24.6 cm)
Publisher: Katôya Iwazoô (Seibei)
Literature: See MFA website and FAMSF, Waseda University websites. A reference book has been privately published by Simon Henry that examines this entire series.
Signature: Toyokuni ga