Kanpos Creative Prints, First Series: Ichikawa Sadanji II as Hishikawa Gengobei
(Kanpo Sosaku-Hanga Shu Daiishu: Ichikawa Sadanji II)
with mica ground; dated Taisho juninen aki (Taisho 12 , autumn), and signed, KanpoSato Sho Han (Sato Shotaro), limited edition label numbered on verso, Shusatsu nihyaku mai zeppan Sato Shotaro Kaiban, Kyoto shi Nawate dori benzaiten cho dai hachijuichi go (200 limited edition, produced by Sato Shotaro, followed by the publisher's Kyoto address, print number 81).
dai oban tate-e 16 5/8 by 10 7/8 in., 42.3 by 27.7 cm
An okubi-e portrait of the actor wearing muted colors; he wears a black haori over a dark green plaid kimono with navy blue collar. His simple make-up highlights his eyes and the lines of his firmly shut mouth. The richly applied dark grey mica background is reminiscent of the prints of Toshusai Sharaku (fl. ca. 1794-95).
This design is the fourth from a series of six published by Sato Shotaro from 1922-1924, and the 1930 Toledo Museum of Art (TMA) exhibition catalogue indicates that the blocks were carved by Maeda Kentaro (active ca. 1924-61) and printed by Oiwa Tokuzo in limited editions of 200. The impression in the collection of the TMA is accompanied by the original series fukuro (folder) with the print title Takashimaya no Gengobei. Takashimaya is the actors' guild of which Sadanji II was a member.
Dorothy Blair, Modern Japanese Prints, Toledo Museum of Art, 1930, no. 330
Amy Reigle Newland, The New Wave: Twentieth Century Japanese Prints from the Robert O. Muller Collection, 1993, p. 172, pl. 214
Amy Reigle Stevens, Printed to Perfection: Twentieth Century Japanese Prints from the Robert O. Muller Collection, 2004, p. 93, pl. 78; pp. 120-121 (play summary) Carolyn M. Putney, Fresh Impressions: Early Modern Japanese Prints, Toledo Museum of Art, 2013, p. 322, cat. no. 338
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