Kuniyoshi: The tengu defending Yoshitsune on Gojo Bridge (Sold)

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Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi
Title: The tengu defending Yoshitsune on Gojo Bridge
Date: 1847-1850

Heike no kyôshaku akugyaku. The great warrior Benkei is discomfited by a group of mystical tengu who are coming to the aid of Ushiwakamaru (Yoshitsune) on Gojo Bridge. Benkei in this scene is already a famous warrior with superhuman strength, and he is embarrassed to be defeated by the much younger and smaller Ushiwakamaru, seen here wearing geta and almost feminine attire. The two later join forces. Kuniyoshi depicted this scene numerous times, as did Yoshitoshi. (This design is also in the collection of the MFA, the Bidwell Collection and the Victoria & Albert Museum). Provenance: From the personal collection of B. W. Robinson.

Dimensions: ôban triptych
Publisher: Enshû-ya Hikobei
Literature: Listed in Robinson #T194.
Seal: Censor’s seals Murata-Mera
Signature: Ichiyûsai Kuniyoshi ga with his paulownia