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Kunisada, Suzuka Pass between Sakanoshita and Tsuchiyama

Utagawa Kunisada (Toyokuni III), 1786-1865

Actors at the Fifty-Three Stations of the Tokaido: Suzuka Pass between Sakanoshita and Tsuchiyama, Kijin no Omatsu
([Yakusha mitate] Tokaido gojusan tsugi no uchi: Sakanoshita Tsuchiyama no aida: Suzukatoge, Kijin no Omatsu)

signed Toyokuni ga, with carver's seal hori Mino, publisher's seal Kichi, Izutsuya (Izutsuya Shokichi ), censor seals Fuku and Muramatsu, and date seal Ni-ju (year of the rat [1852], 10th month)

oban tate-e 14 5/8 by 10 in., 37 by 25.5 cm

The actor Bando Shuka I (1813-1855) is in the role of Kijin no Omatsu, also known as Omatsu the Demon God, measuring the length of her blade from the play Shinpan koshi no shiranami (New Edition of the Thieves Crossing over). The play, starring Shuka as Omatsu, was performed in Ichimura Theater. The connection to Suzuka Pass, however, is obscure.

Reference:
Andreas Marks, Kunisada's Tokaido: Riddles in Japanese Woodblock Prints, 2013, p. 155, cat. T63-49C

$550