Toyokuni III's Fifty-three Stations of the Tokaido - Toyokuni III's 1852 series "The Fifty-three Stations of the Tokaido" pairs kabuki portraits with the stations along the famous Tokaido Road. Each design features a half-length figure in the foreground, with a border of clouds separating the actor from the landscape above. Interestingly, the title cartouche of each print is framed by different objects related to the kabuki character or play, including armor and weapons, household objects, flowers, horse equipment, and traveler's clothing and baggage. The large expressive characters are beautifully drawn and detailed, with fine line work in the hair and soft bokashi shading in the backgrounds.
The exact number of prints for the series is unclear, because two prints exist for some stations, and some intermediate stations are also included. Where there are two designs of the same subject, the background landscape continues across the two prints. This handsome series proved extremely popular when released, and remains a favorite of collectors today.
Kawasaki: Iwai Hanshiro V as Shirai Gonpachi - Fantastic large figure portrait of the actor Iwai Hanshiro V as the robber and murderer Shirai Gonpachi grasping the hilt of his sword. His eyes are open wide in alarm as he looks forward. The setting behind him shows the post station of Kawasaki on the Tokaido Road with passengers in a ferry crossing the river to a village on the opposite shore. A great expressive image, with fine bokashi shading on the water and sky.
Artist - Toyokuni III/Kunisada (1786 - 1864)
Image Size - 13 3/4" x 9 1/2"
Condition - This print with good detail as shown. Thinning at side, a couple wormholes, repaired. A few creases, slight rubbing at edge. Please see photos for details.
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