THE DANCER SANKATSU (Utagawa Kuniyoshi)

N.1 ukiyo-e woodblock print
Year: 1852
Condition: good
Size: 24,5 x 36,5 cm



Refined ukiyo-e (浮世絵) woodblock print made by the famous artist Utagawa Kuniyoshi (歌川国芳) and depicting the dancer Kasaya Sankatsu (笠屋三勝) traveling with her patron Kasamatsu Heizo (笠松平三). The work is taken from the series “Sixty-nine Stations of the Kisokaido Road” (木曾街道六十九次之内) and is paired with the Kashiwabara (柏原) station as the woman displays on her clothes and luggage the emblem of her beloved Akaneya Hanshichi (茜屋半七), that is three leaves of “daimyo oak” (柏), a tree which, in Japanese writing, is represented with the first ideogram which also composes the name of the aforementioned station.

The title of the series, at the top right, is framed in an inset decorated with the accessories for the scenic representation of the Shiokumi (汐汲み) dance, in which the salt-scooper Matsukaze (松風) dances remembering her lost love, the noble and poet Ariwara no Yukihira (在原行平). At the top left, inside an inset where the oak leaf motif appears again, a representation of Mount Ibuki (伊吹山).

The precious woodblock print, produced in August 1852 by the publisher Yahataya Sakujiro (八幡屋作次郎) and by the carver Tsuge Shojiro (津下庄治郎), despite the right signs of aging, is in overall good condition.