Original Sadanobu II (1848 - 1940) Japanese Woodblock Print
Osaka Prints - Produced in the Kansai region, including Osaka and Kyoto, Osaka prints or kamigata-e are instantly distinguishable from typical Edo ukiyo-e. A major difference is the choice of subject matter. Osaka prints were nearly always portraits of actors or kabuki scenes. In contrast, Edo print subjects included beauties, landscapes, nature scenes, warriors, and historic events, in addition to kabuki.
Distinctly different artistic styles also emerged in Edo and Osaka in the 18th and 19th century, resulting in certain recognizable characteristics for each area. Osaka prints feature more subtle, serious figures, reflecting the wagoto or soft style of acting prevalent in the area, along with distinctive facial expressions. The aragato or brash manner of acting popular in Edo influenced print designs towards bolder images of heroism and military prowess.
Much like the style of the prints, the demand for ukiyo-e in the cities of Osaka and Edo also varied. Osaka produced far fewer ukiyo-e designs than Edo did. As a consequence, Osaka prints are rarer and also some of the highest quality prints made in the 19th century, with many featuring deluxe techniques such as burnishing or embossing. Osaka prints are a rare and wonderful collecting area of Japanese woodblocks.
Comments - Handsome rare full oban format kabuki triptych depicting a confrontation between a matron and a beauty. In the center, the young woman throws her hands out in alarm as she stares at the matron, who glares back at her at left, her hand on a scabbard with the blade partially pulled out. The man caught between them crouches slightly, holding a sword wrapped in cloth. Another woman watches at right, holding a spear upright. A lively, colorful design, detailed with faint embossing on the white areas of the kimono and touches of metallic pigment that have oxidized to a dark tone.
Artist - Sadanobu II (1848 - 1940)
Image Size - 14 1/8" x 27 5/8"
Condition - This print with excellent detail as shown. Two separate panels. A few small holes and thinning spots, a couple small tears, repaired. Slight toning and soiling, a few creases, stain. Please see photos for details.