Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1798-1861)
The young hero Inuzuka Shino (Bandô Shûka I, left) fighting against the chief of police Inukai Genpachi (Seki Sanjûrô III, right) on the roof of the Hôryûkaku tower of Koga Castle. A legendary scene from the epic warrior novel "Nansô Satomi Hakkenden" (The Story of the Eight Dogs of the House of Satomi in Nansō) by Takizawa (Kyokutei) Bakin (1767-1848), designed here by Kuniyoshi on the occasion of the premiere of a Kabuki theatre adaptation titled “Satomi Hakkenden”, at the Ichimura theatre in Edo in the first month of the year 1852.
Untitled - Inukai Genpachi Nobumichi (right) – Inuzuka Shino Moritaka (left)
Signature: Ichiyûsai Kuniyoshi ga
Publisher: Iseya Kanekichi (Isekane), Edo
Censor seals: Hama, Magome
Date: 1852, 1st month
Size: Ôban diptych, overall c. 36,7 x 50,3 cm
Very good impression, good colours (a little faded). The two sheet unbacked, untrimmed and separate. Smoothed folds along the margins, partly reinforced from verso. A few small holes, a thin rubbed spot and corners restored. Minor soiling and stains, on the right margin and under the signature handwritten old ink entry. Overall very good condition.
Kuniyoshi did several illustrations of this scene – this one is different in that it is almost symmetrical. Rare. Cf. British Museum, No. 2008,3037.18214; Tokyo Metropolitan Library M241-23-3, M241-23-3a