Utagawa School Painting of Actor with Tattoo


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Artist: Unknown
Title: Actor With Tattoo Dreaming of a Festival
Date: ca. 1850s 

Small but skillful watercolor painting of a tattooed man looking over his shoulder. He seems to be a kabuki actor portraying a laborer who plays a role during an important festival. In a cloudlike inset behind him we see the peak of Mount Fuji and what look like floats for a major festival, perhaps the Sanno Festival. His arms have flower tattoos. He holds a towel on his shoulders and seems to be considering his next move. Perhaps its is a memory he is calling to mind or he is planning something for the festival day. Often the brash young heroes in kabuki plays wore neck towels flamboyantly tied and displayed.

Condition: Very good condition. Laid down onto backing sheet.
Dimensions: 22.5 x 11.2 cm plus margins
Signature: Unsigned