Category Archives: kabuki theatre

Figures and Backgrounds in Ukiyo-e

Japanese woodblock prints liberate the figure from the ground by either dipensing with it altogether, or by embedding it like in marquetry, or by creating a series of flat cut outs arranged in shallow space – like the flats in a theatre. The figure can be turned into the complex system of signs and symbols that create narrative or else be involved in the complex visual game of ‘mitate’ where people and things stand for or make equivalence with other things… naturalism as known in the west is not part of the repetoire of ukiyo-e artists, their game was more complicated Continue reading

Posted in Figure and Ground, Japanese prints, japanese woodblock prints, kabuki theatre, ukiyo-e art, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Bandits and Warlords. Fighting men in Japanese prints.

The Toshidama Gallery is showing a collection of prints featuring aggressive and violent folk heroes and warlords. The selection looks at how the populace of Edo expressed their frustration with the government and with the increasingly corrupt samurai class. As … Continue reading

Posted in Asian Art, Floating World, Japanese Art, Japanese gangster, Japanese prints, japanese woodblock prints, kabuki theatre, Kunisada, Kuniyoshi, Male Tragedy, Otokodate, Suikoden, yoshitoshi | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sugoroku Magic – Shimidzu no Kwanja Yoshitaka

What a spendid rat! The magician riding along here is not Nikki Danjo – the great kabuki villain who transforms into a rat in order to steal a valuable scroll – this chap is Shimidzu no Kwanja Yoshitaka. He was … Continue reading

Posted in Edo, Floating World, Japanese Art, Japanese prints, japanese woodblock prints, kabuki theatre, Kunichika, Magical, supernatural Japanese print, Toshidama Gallery. | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Sugoroku Magic – Jiraiya

A series of magicians and ghosts all taken from squares on a nineteenth century sugoroku board by the artist Kunichika Continue reading

Posted in Asian Art, Edo, Floating World, Japanese Art, kabuki theatre, Kunichika, Kunisada, Magical, Sugoroku, Toshidama Gallery., ukiyo-e, ukiyo-e art | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sugoroku Magic – Princess Yuki

The image above is the top centre panel from an amazing Sugoroku game board designed by the artist Toyoharu Kunichika in the 1860’s. You can see the whole board at the Toshidama Gallery website by clicking this link: Sugoroku Board. … Continue reading

Posted in Floating World, japanese woodblock prints, kabuki theatre, Kunichika, Sugoroku, supernatural Japanese print | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Pirate Chief Kezori Kyuemon

What an amazing image this is… its a fabulous woodblock print by the nineteenth century artist Kunichika and it depicts the great actor of the kabuki theatre, Ichikawa Danjuro IX as the Pirate Chief Kezori Kyuemon from the play, Hakata … Continue reading

Posted in Edo, Floating World, Ichikawa Danjuro, Japanese Art, Japanese Art Gallery, Japanese prints, japanese woodblock prints, kabuki theatre, Kunichika, Meiji Art, Toshidama Gallery., ukiyo-e, ukiyo-e art, Uncategorized, utagawa | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

British Museum Acquires Japanese Prints

There has been some welcome publicity for the brilliance, the genius of Japanese woodblock prints in the last few weeeks. The Guardian newspaper donated a large chunk of webspace to  advertising  the acquisition of  some 359 Japanese prints by the … Continue reading

Posted in British Museum, Floating World, Japanese Art Gallery, Japanese prints, japanese woodblock prints, kabuki theatre, ukiyo-e, ukiyo-e art, yakusha-e | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment