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Kuniyoshi

Utagawa Kuniyoshi

1797-1861

One Hundred and Eight Heroes of the Shuihuzhuan: From the Eight Sheets of the Seventy-Two Earthly Stars, no. 4
(Suikoden goketsu hyakuhachinin: Chisatsusei shichijuni-in hachiban nai, Junimai no uchi yon)

artist's signature at lower right Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga, with censor seal kiwame, publisher Kagaya Kichiemon with his address Ryogoku and his seal at the bottom right Kichi Ryogoku Kagaya, series title at the top right corner in kanji, Suikoden goketsu hyakuhachinin: Chisatsusei shichijuni-in hachiban nai, the number of the design from the series at bottom right corner Junimai no uchi yon (4 of 12), with nine of the 'earthly' Suikoden heroes identified: top row from right to left, Kinganhyo Shion, Chinsanzan Koshin, Somonshin Hokyoku; the middle row starting below the title cartouche, Sekishogun Sekiyu, Byotaichu Setsuei, Shutsurinryu Suen; and the bottom row, Kendoshin Ikuhoshi, Shosharan Bokushun, and Dokukakuryu Sujun, ca. 1830

oban tate-e 14 5/8 by 9 7/8 in., 37 by 25 cm

This print is from the early edition of this series published by Kagaya Kichiemon, the publisher of Kuniyoshi's circa 1827-30 Suikoden series, Tsuzoku Suikoden goketsu hyakuhachinin no hitori (The 108 Heroes of the Popular Suikoden All Told). This series of twelve oban sheets, released around 1830 near the conclusion of the ambitious first series, illustrates all of the heroes presented concisely in groups of nine and categorized as either among the 'Thirty-six Heavenly ('Tenkosei') Stars in Four Sheets or one of the Seventy-two Earthly ('Chisatsusei') Stars in Eight Sheets. The publisher Ibaya Sensaburo issued a later edition using the same blocks with Kichiemon's publisher seal removed and with the watari censor seal.

References:
B. W. Robinson, Kuniyoshi, Victoria and Albert Museum, 1961, p. 37, appendix table C, no. 4 (series title)
Inge Klompmakers, Of Brigands and Bravery: Kuniyoshi's Heroes of the Suikoden, 1998, p.31, p.195 (names of heroes); p. 185 Appendix I (on series)
Andreas Marks, Publishers of Japanese Woodblock Prints: A Compendium, 2011, p.186, seal no. 22-025
(inv. no. 10-5046)

price: $ 1,100

kikumon

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