The Actor Ichikawa Ebijuro I as Cormorant Fisher Kujuro

Artist: Toyokawa Yoshikuni (fl. ca. 1813-30)
Historical period(s)
Edo period, 1822
Woodblock print; ink and color on paper
H x W (overall): 37.8 x 26.1 cm (14 7/8 x 10 1/4 in)
Credit Line
The Anne van Biema Collection
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Woodblock print

actor, Anne van Biema collection, Edo period (1615 - 1868), fishing, Japan, kabuki, oban, poems, portrait, theater, ukiyo-e, yakusha-e
Provenance research underway.

The cloth wrapped around his neck identifies this character as a fisherman, who is played by the Osaka actor Ichikawa Ebijvro I (1777-;1827). The haiku (hokku) on this image is by the poet Naito Joso (1662-1704), a disciple of Matsuo Basho (1644-94). The imagery of the poem resonates with the kabuki role, which recounts the affairs of a villainous feudal lord who must skirt about to stay out of sight:

A stray cat dashes out
from beneath the eaves-
the winter moon glistens

Translation of poem by John T. Carpenter

Published References
  • Ann Yonemura, et al. Masterful Illusions: Japanese Prints from the Anne van Biema Collection. Seattle and Washington. cat. 49, pp. 150-151.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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