Titles of Dance Descriptions - Designed between 1856 and 1858, Toyokuni III's large series "Titles of Dance Descriptions" presents scenes from a variety of kabuki plays, including some from performances a few years prior to publication. Each includes expressive figures in nicely detailed settings, and some feature deluxe treatments such as burnishing or embossing. The title cartouche take the form of two overlapping books, with text featuring the name of the play, the date of the performance, and the roles. These handsome designs are seldom seen, and are a nice choice for a kabuki enthusiast or Toyokuni III collector.
The Mysterious Cat Stone - Fantastic kabuki scene of a warrior battling a cat witch appearing in human form. Resting on one knee, he draws his blade as the beauty towers over him, grimacing with enormous ears and long dark hair. She wears an elegant kimono, her sleeve raised above her head. An enormous cat can be seen through the tattered reed blinds behind them, lurking in the dark night. The scene comes from the tale of the Cat Witch of Okazaki, who preyed on travelers. A cat-shaped stone at Okazaki was believed to hold the spirit of a vengeful dead woman, who could transform into a cat monster in human shape. The actors are Nakamura Shikan IV as the samurai and Ichimura Uzaemon XIII as the cat witch. A great supernatural subject with wonderful detail.
Artist - Toyokuni III/Kunisada (1786 - 1864)
Image Size - 13 1/2" x 9" + top margin as shown
Condition - This print with excellent detail as shown. Diagonal fold at corner, a few creases at edges. Please see photos for details.
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