Kuniyoshi: Kusunoki Masatsura and Severed Heads at the Battle of Shijonawate 英雄六家撰 楠正行

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Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi 國芳 (1798-1861)
Title: Kusunoki Masatsura 楠正行 makes his last stand at the battle of Shijo-nawate. 
Series: Six Select Heroes (Eiiyû rokkasen)
Date: 1853

Kusunoki Masatsura 楠正行 makes his last stand at the battle of Shijo-nawate. In the background we see troops engaged in battle on the shore of the river. He pulls back for a fatal stroke, gripping both hands on his sword hilt. His purple lips and grey complexion show that he has lost vast quantities of blood from his numerous wounds and that he has little time left on earth. At his waist is a net bag which contains the severed heads of his enemy. A decapitated head lies at his feet, as well as a severed arm. The stone-like shape behind him has been covered in glittering mica, as well as the spilled blood at his feet. Kuniyoshi returned to the subject of Masatsura Kusunoki numerous times in his designs for warrior prints.

Condition: Excellent impression and color. Very good condition. Some creasing. With mica highlights.
Dimensions: ôban (36.8 x 25.3 cm)
Publisher: Izumiya Ichibe (Kansendo)
Literature: “Kuniyoshi: The Warrior Prints” by BW Robinson S81.2. See Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and British Museum collections online.
Signature: Kuniyoshi ga