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[AC] Mead Art Museum at Amherst College; [HC] Hampshire College Art Gallery;
[HD] Historic Deerfield; [MH] Mount Holyoke College Art Museum; [MH SK] The Joseph Allen Skinner Museum at Mount Holyoke College; [SC] Smith College Museum of Art; [UM] University Museum of Contemporary Art at UMASS Amherst


Maker(s):Utagawa Kunisada (Toyokuni III); Nishimuraya Yohachi, publisher; Moriya Jihei, publisher
Culture:Japanese (1786–1864); Japanese (active ca. 1751–1860); Japanese (active ca. 1797–1886)
Title:The Unveiling of the Great Buddha at Awashima, Kada [Kaichō kada awashima daimyōjin]
Date Made:1838
Materials:woodblock print
Place Made:Tokyo
Measurements:(a) sheet: 13 1/8 in x 9 3/4 in; 33.3 cm x 24.8 cm; (b) sheet: 13 1/8 in x 9 3/16 in; 33.3 cm x 23.3 cm; (c) sheet: 13 1/8 in x 9 5/8 in; 33.3 cm x 24.5 cm
Accession Number:  AC 2005.463.a-c
Credit Line:Gift of William Green

vertical ōban triptych with some trimming; nishiki-e

Label Text:
All three panels are signed "Kōchōrō Kunisada ga" ('drawn by Kōchōrō Kunisada'), a name used by the artist from ca. 1825–1861. All panels prints also bear the circular kiwame seal of the censor. At lower-left of the left panel is partially visible the address seal of publisher Nishimuraya Yohachi; his mark is also partially visible at lower-right of the central panel, directly beneath the kiwame seal. The right panel also bears this seal, as well as the mark of publisher Moriya Jihei, which is also only semi-visible owing to the trimming of the lower margin.

The title of this print is indicated within the red cartouche at upper-right, as well as in the white banners flying in the center and right panels. The text superimposed against the sky in the central panel reads "A Picture of the Grounds of the Ekōin" ('Ekōin keidai no zu'), a temple near Awashima in Wakayama. Comparison with another impression at the Boston MFA (acc. no. 17.3210.6-8) reveals, however, this text has been changed; the Boston impression's banners and cartouche indicate a location of Saga, near Kyoto. As such, it is likely that the Mead's impressions is the earlier and original design, given its geographical coherence, and that the Boston impression was created by altering the banners and cartouche on the woodblocks, a common and simple task. However, changing the text against the sky while still maintaining the integrity of the blue gradient would have been much more difficult.

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