Artist: Utagawa Kuniyoshi (歌川国芳)

Print: Sawamura Sōjūrō V as Teranishi Kanshin (寺西閑心) on the left, Ichimura Uzaemon XII as Inabanosuke (因幡之助) in the center, and Onoe Kikugorō III as Usugomo with the cat-gost Okabe on the right in The Lifetime of Onoe Kikugorō III (Onoe Kikugorō ichidai banashi - 尾上梅寿一代噺)

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Dates: 1847,created
Dimensions: 29.25 in,14.0 in,Overall dimensions
Medium: Japanese color woodblock print

Signed: Ichiyūsai Kuniyoshi ga
Publisher: Wakau (Marks U366 - seal 25-254)
Censor seals: Hama and Kinugasa

Related links: Naprusuteku Museum; Metropolitan Museum of Art - center and right panels only; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston - center panel only; Waseda University - left panel; Waseda University - center panel; Waseda University right panel; Waseda University - center panel; Muzeum Sztuki i Techniki Japońskiej Manggha, Krakow - right panel only; National Gallery of Victoria; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Hankyu Culture Foundation - right panel; Hankyu Culture Foundation - center panel; Hankyu Culture Foundation - left panel;

Physical description:

From the B. W. Robinson collection. This triptych commemorates a performance at the Ichimura Theater in the seventh month of 1847. The scene with the giant cat monster appears to take place in an dilapidated old temple.


Another copy of this triptych was featured in the Life of Cats: Selections from the Hiraki Ukiyo-e Collection at the Japan Society from March 13 to June 7, 2015.


Illustrated in:

1) Ukiyoe Museums in Japan (Nihon no ukiyoe bijutsukan - 日本の浮世絵美術館), vol. 1, p. 36. That example is from the collection of the Sendai City Museum (仙台市博物館). This entry erroneously gives the wrong date for this triptych. They say it is 1887, which is clearly wrong.

2) 原色浮世絵大百科事典 (Genshoku Ukiyoe Daihyakka Jiten), vol. 1, p. 88.

3) black and white in Chimi moryō no sekai : Ukiyoe : Edo no gekiga--reikai, makai no shujinkō-tachi (浮世絵魑魅魍魎の世界: 江戶の劇画 : 霊界魔界の主人公たち) by 中右瑛 (Nakau Ei), Ribun Shuppan, Tokyo, 1987, p. 81. [The text is entirely in Japanese.]

4) black and white in Utagawa Kuniyoshi, Springfield Museum of Art, 1980, #149.


There is another copy of this triptych in the Worcester Art Museum.