Kuniyoshi: Kadono Juheiji Tsugifusa Kneeling in Surpise 角野十平治次房

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Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1798-1861)
Title: Kadono Juheiji Tsugifusa Kneeling in Surpise 角野十平治次房
Series: Mirror of the True Loyalty of the Faithful Retainers (Seichû gishin meimei kagami) 誠忠義臣名々鏡
Date: 1857

Here we see Kadono Juheiji Tsugifusa kneeling with a look of surprise and dismay at what appears to be a note tucked beneath a futon. He has obviously just arrived from a long trip, as his traveling hat and parcels sit behind him, and he still wears a traveling cloak. It’s possible someone has left him or decided to take their own life, as we might see the hem of someone’s garment at lower right. He has just moved aside a sleeping screen with his left hand, so it is a person who is well known to him. The 19th century craze for images of the story of the 47 Ronin would make today’s obsessions look tame. Even Kuniyoshi’s boundless creativity might have been taxed by the endless appetite for Chushingura (47 Ronin) scenes. The series cartouche is in the shape of a sword guard (tsuba).

Condition: Very good impression, color and condition.
Dimensions: ôban (37.2 x 24.6 cm)
Publisher: Horikoshi
Literature: Robinson #S90.45. See British Museum.
Signature: Ichiyûsai Kuniyoshi ga