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Utagawa Kunisada (Toyokuni III), 1786-1865
Actors at the Fifty-Three Stations of the Tokaido: Kawasaki Station, Shirai Gonpachi
([Yakusha mitate] Tokaido gojusan tsugi no uchi: Kawasaki eki, Shirai Gonpachi)
signed Toyokuni ga, carver's seal hori Take, publisher's seal Bun, Tsujiokaya (Tsujiokaya Bunsuke of Kinshodo), censor seals Fuku and Muramatsu, and date seal Ni-uru (year of the rat , intercalary month)
oban tate-e 14 3/4 by 10 1/4 in., 37.5 by 26 cm
The actor Iwai Tojaku (1776-1847) is in the role of the ronin Shirai Gonpachi from Suzugamori (The Execution Ground at Suzugamori), a scene from Tsuruya Nanboku IV's (1755-1829) play Ukiyozuka Hiyoku no Inazuma (The Floating World's Patter and Matching Lightening Bolts). Gonpachi finds himself in the Suzugamori execution grounds outside Edo after leaving his small town of Inshu. Kawasaki station, just the second stop on the Tokaido, would have been the last station Gonpachi passed before arriving at Suzugamori.
Andreas Marks, Kunisada's Tokaido: Riddles in Japanese Woodblock Prints, 2013, p. 116, cat. T63-03