Beauties, Samurai, and Thunder God Raijin

by Yoshitaki (1841 - 1899)

Current Status

Beauties, Samurai, and Thunder God Raijin by Yoshitaki (1841 - 1899)

Original Yoshitaki (1841 - 1899) Japanese Woodblock Print
Beauties, Samurai, and Thunder God Raijin

Osaka Prints - Produced in the Kansai region, including Osaka and Kyoto, Osaka prints or kamigata-e are instantly distinguishable from typical Edo ukiyo-e. A major difference is the choice of subject matter. Osaka prints were nearly always portraits of actors or kabuki scenes. In contrast, Edo print subjects included beauties, landscapes, nature scenes, warriors, and historic events, in addition to kabuki.

Distinctly different artistic styles also emerged in Edo and Osaka in the 18th and 19th century, resulting in certain recognizable characteristics for each area. Osaka prints feature more subtle, serious figures, reflecting the wagoto or soft style of acting prevalent in the area, along with distinctive facial expressions. The aragato or brash manner of acting popular in Edo influenced print designs towards bolder images of heroism and military prowess.

Much like the style of the prints, the demand for ukiyo-e in the cities of Osaka and Edo also varied. Osaka produced far fewer ukiyo-e designs than Edo did. As a consequence, Osaka prints are rarer and also some of the highest quality prints made in the 19th century, with many featuring deluxe techniques such as burnishing or embossing. Osaka prints are a rare and wonderful collecting area of Japanese woodblocks.

Comments - Rare, six-panel kabuki scene of two triptychs3 featuring figures set against a colorful background with a red sky with a white border of gourds and motifs running across the top, and blue-violet clouds shaded to white and green. The figure at right is the Thunder God Raijin, hopping on one foot and waving his drumstick, a ring of small drums encircling his head. A rectangular inset next to him shows a monk with prayer beads. Nicely detailed with lacquer on the black obi and black kimono trim.

Artist - Yoshitaki (1841 - 1899)

Image Size - 9 1/4" x 42 1/8" + margins as shown

Condition - This print with excellent color and detail as shown. Six separate panels, one backed with paper. Slight soiling. Please see photos for details. Good overall.

Beauties, Samurai, and Thunder God Raijin by Yoshitaki (1841 - 1899)
Beauties, Samurai, and Thunder God Raijin by Yoshitaki (1841 - 1899)

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