Earliest Takamizawa Reprints – This handsome reprint is by the venerable Takamizawa publisher and is from the earliest period of their work as a publishing house. Takamizawa was known as one of the finest reprint publishers of the 20th century and produced some of the highest quality ukiyo-e woodblock reprints of all time. Drawing on the traditions and methods of the Edo era, the prints were produced replicating original Edo era colors and printed on beautiful handmade paper. The printers worked with the utmost care and great attention to detail, masterfully reproducing color and line work.
This print, and the others in the associated group, bear the earliest, red two part "Takamizawa" seal on the reverse attesting to the Takamizawa publication of these prints and the date from the Taisho era (early 1920s). See the photo of the seal example. The prints came in early Takamizawa folders with a decorative seal from the company (see folder seal photos). These were group folders, and the seal photos are for reference and dating only
Comments - A striking portrait by Sharaku depicting Onoe Matsusuke I as the impoverished samurai Matsushita Mikinoshin in the kabuki play "Katakiuchi Noriaibanashi." His appearance is haggard, with dark shadows around his eyes and mouth, and his hair is pulled into a sloppy knot at the side of his head, with hair growing out atop his unshaven head. He leans forward, clutching a folding fan, a sword at his side. A poignant and expressive image, not often seen in reprint, with a distressed dark mica background.
Artist - Sharaku (active 1794 - 1795)
Image Size - 15 1/4" x 9 3/4"
Condition - With excellent color and detail as shown. Please see photos for details. Good overall.