The Actor Ichikawa Danjuro VIII as Matsuwakamaru

Maker(s)
Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi 歌川国芳 (1797-1861)
Historical period(s)
Edo period, 1847
Medium
Woodblock print; ink and color on paper
Dimensions
H x W (overall): 22.4 x 28.9 cm (8 13/16 x 11 3/8 in)
Geography
Japan
Credit Line
The Anne van Biema Collection
Collection
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
S2004.3.184
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Print
Type

Woodblock print

Keywords
actor, Anne van Biema collection, Edo period (1615 - 1868), fan, Japan, kabuki, portrait, theater, ukiyo-e, WWII-era provenance
Provenance
Provenance information is currently unavailable
Label

Within the format of a circular fan, Ichikawa Danjvro VIII appears against a naturalistic landscape background. Due to the ongoing ban on actor prints imposed in 1842, the actor's name is omitted, but his role is identified as Matsuwakamaru. The straw raincoat over his colorful kimono frames the handsome features of this actor, who was sensationally popular during his brief lifetime. Kuniyoshi's portrait captures the actor at the peak of his career, which began with his debut onstage when he was an infant and ascended swiftly; he assumed the Danjuro name in 1832, when he was still a boy. His popularity was so great that when he played in Sukeroku, the water from the barrel in which he immersed himself to hide from pursuers was sold to his fans.

Published References
  • Ann Yonemura, with contributions by et al. Masterful Illusions: Japanese Prints from the Anne van Biema Collection. Seattle and Washington. cat. 40, pp. 134-135.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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