Kuniyoshi: Frog and Dragon Magic Diptych

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Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi  歌川国芳
Title: Supernatural scene at Otsu 大津. 
Date: ca. 1847

Supernatural scene at Otsu 大津. Onoe Kikugoro III as Nakasaina Sonja seated on a giant toad throne, from the kabuki play Ichidai banashi. He is in the character of an arhat, or holy man, and holds a bowl from which a small dragon has just emerged. The very skillful giant toad he is seated upon seems to be comprised of the rock itself. Left is the actor Sawamura Sojuro as the bandit leader Nippon Daemon, who seems relaxed as he enjoys watching an large toad performing a dance. He holds a heavy fan and carries a sling as though he has been traveling. On the 7th month of 1847 Kikugoro appeared on stage for the last time, at the Ichimuraza in a program called “Onoe Baiju Ichidai Banashi”. This play was performed at the Ichimura theater in the seventh month of 1847. Scarce.

Condition: Excellent impression. Very good condition. Good/fair color. 
Dimensions: ôban diptych (36 x 49.8 cm)
Publisher: Ebisuya Shoshichi
Signature: Ichiyûsai Kuniyoshi ga with his paulownia seal