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Maker(s):Vershbow, Gregory
Culture:American (1982- )
Title:Lost Archive #1 (reimagined work for Utagawa Kunisada (Toyokuni III)'s 'Kabuki Actor as Shōgun Tarō Yoshikado', 1847-1848, Gift of William Green, 2005.1191)
Date Made:2016
Materials:color transparencies, light box, magnifying glass
Measurements:overall: 2 x 16 7/8 x 12.25"
Accession Number:  AC 2016.03
Credit Line:Purchase with the Richard Templeton (Class of 1931) Photography Fund
Museum Collection:  Mead Art Museum at Amherst College
2016-03 full.jpg

Color transparencies in a light box

Label Text:
Kunisada’s original print depicts a traditional kabuki costume change: the character of Yoshikado often appears in disguise, only revealing his true identity at a climactic moment and with the help of stagehands who pull off the outer layers of his costume. With this lightbox, however, Vershbow has reimagined the scene as a tug-of-war between an Edo-period actor and a modern girl, who wears American sneakers and sports a hairstyle reminiscent of contemporary Japanese horror films, such as The Ring (1998) and The Grudge (2002). Despite her modernity, an aspect of kabuki theater remains: the girl’s feathered torso and masked eyes suggest her transformation from the owl in the central panel to a chimerical human. Such metamorphoses are a staple of kabuki.

theater; kabuki; nature; trees; men; women; warriors; costume; shoes

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2 Related Media Items

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1 Related Objects

AC 2005.1191
Utagawa Kunisada (Toyokuni III)
Kabuki Actor as Shōgun Tarō Yoshikado (incomplete)
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