Kuniyoshi: Shoki Threatening Demons
Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi
Title: Shoki Threatening Demons
Shoki san jaki no sokukô. Shoki poses dramatically, sword at the ready in his right hand. He is rendered in the style of a sumi painting, done all in black and grey. He directs his glare towards an inset cartouche of a man being supported by three friends. A woman guides them with her lantern. The subtext would be that the man in the cartouche has gotten himself way too drunk in the pleasure quarters, so the demon that Shoki might be battling here is one of drunken excess. With better color than the BM example. Shôki - san jaki ni sokukô (Shooki-san immediately acting against malicious spirit with a good deed). The text: “sake ga yuu, kokoro no oni no tsuno orete, atode shooki (Shooki) ni wabiru namayoi.” The rough translation: A drunken man whose horns of malicious spirit had broken (meaning: had overcome his malicious weakness) apologizes later in his good conscience. The play of the word “Shooki” meaning Shooki and the other “in his good conscience”.
Condition: Excellent impression, color and condition.
Dimensions: ôban diptych (36.6 x 50.3 cm)
Publisher: Enshuya Matabei
Literature: See BM online.
Signature: Ichiyûsai Kuniyoshi hitsu