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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):Toyohara Kunichika; Yorozuya Zentarō, publisher
Culture:Japanese (1835–1900); Japanese (active ca. 1861–1868)
Title:The Actor Sawamura Tosshō II as Zenji Tarō, from the kabuki play "The Sound of the Zither of Iwakura Sogen's Beloved" ('Iwakura Sogen renbo no tsumagoto')
Date Made:1862
Materials:woodblock print
Measurements:(a) sheet: 14 3/8 in. x 9 11/16 in.; (b) sheet: 14 3/8 in. x 10 1/16 in.
Accession Number:  AC 2005.251.a,b
Credit Line:Gift of William Green

single panel of a vertical ōban triptych; yakusha-e

Label Text:
The actor's name is printed at top-left in the yellow cartouche, accompanied by the role written in the smaller blue cartouche. At lower-right is the artist's signature, which reads "Kunichika ga," ('picture by Kunichika'), and is within a toshidama cartouche. To the left of the signature are the mark of the publisher Yorozuya Zentarō — the character "Jū" placed within a right angle — and the combined date-aratame seal of the censor, which identifies a date of inspection as the ninth lunar month of 1862 (Bunkyū 2).

Another impression of this print is held in the collections of Waseda University, Tokyo, (acc no. 100-8445) with the source play identified as "The Sound of the Zither of Iwakura Sogen's Beloved" ('Iwakura Sogen renbo no tsumagoto'), a variation on a well-known story of the priest Iwakura Sogen and the beauitful Irokotohime, with whom he becomes obsessed.

An accompanying panel of the triptych is held by the Mead Art Museum (acc. no. AC 2005.252)


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