The Actor Nakamura Utaemon III as Kanda Yogoro

Artist: Hokushu (fl. ca. 1810-1832)
Historical period(s)
Edo period, 1822
Woodblock print; ink and color on paper
H x W (overall): 39 x 27.4 cm (15 3/8 x 10 13/16 in)
Credit Line
The Anne van Biema Collection
Anne van Biema collection
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Woodblock print

actor, Anne van Biema collection, Edo period (1615 - 1868), Japan, kabuki, oban, poems, portrait, ukiyo-e, WWII-era provenance, yakusha-e
Provenance information is currently unavailable
Previous Owner(s)

Anne van Biema American, 1915 - 2004


In this print, which is the right print of a triptych, Nakamura Utaemon III appears, raising his truncheon against the character played by Ichikawa Ebijuro I in the left print (see S2004.3.261). He plays a kabuki policemen known as torite. The center print, which represents the actor Nakamura Tomijuro II (Matsue III) in the role of a courtesan, is not in this collection. The bold, patterned background, a common feature in Osaka actor prints, is rendered in reserve, and is based on the actor's family crest. A poem inscribed on the print, for Utaemon, praises Shikan, the actor's poetry name:

Playing to packed houses,
Shikan's dramatic stances
are just so "arresting"
that fans really feel
"there's nowhere to escape!"

Translation of poems by John T. Carpenter

Published References
  • Ann Yonemura with contributions by et al. Masterful Illusions: Japanese Prints from the Anne van Biema Collection. Seattle and Washington. cat. 48, pp. 148-149.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum