The Actor Nakamura Takesaburo Playing a Woman’s Role

Historical period(s)
Edo period, ca. 1720
Medium
Hand-colored woodblock print; ink on paper
Dimensions
H x W: 32 x 15.6 cm (12 5/8 x 6 1/8 in)
Geography
Japan
Credit Line
Gift of Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer
Collection
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
F1974.12
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Print
Type

Woodblock print

Keywords
actor, Edo period (1615 - 1868), Japan, kabuki, theater, ukiyo-e, WWII-era provenance, yakusha-e
Provenance
Provenance information is currently unavailable
Label

In this print Nakamura Takesaburo is identified by the inscription to his right. A popular actor of women's roles (onnagata), Takesburo here wears a costume decorated with large cherry blossoms and holds a cloth in his mouth in an expression of intense emotion. Across his forehead he wears the purple cloth that was at times attached to the wig to enhance the charm of the onnagata's appearance. The actor's distinctive crest marks the right shoulder of his kimono.

Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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