Utagawa Kunisada (歌川国貞) / Toyokuni III (三代豊国) (artist 1786 – 01/12/1865)
Iwai Kumesaburō II (岩井粂三郎) as the courtesan Takao (高尾) and Segawa Kikunojō V (瀬川菊之丞) as the daimyō Yorikane (頼兼)
20.25 in x 14.625 in (Overall dimensions) Japanese woodblock print
Signed: Gototei Kunisada ga
Publisher: Nishinomiya Shinroku
(Marks 392 - seal 25-341)
Censor's seal: kiwame
British Museum - the full triptych
Minneapolis Institute of Arts - left panel only
Waseda University - center panel of the triptych
Waseda University - missing panel on far left
Ritsumeikan University - missing panel on far left
Ritsumeikan University - middle panel
Ristumeikan University - right panel
Art Institute of Chicago - 1827 Kunisada fan print of Iwai Kumesaburō II of Takao
These prints commemorate a performance of the play Banzei Okuni kabuki (萬歳阿国歌舞伎) by Sakurada Jisuke II which was staged at the Ichimuraza in the 4th month of 1827.
Takao can often be identified by her kimono decorated with autumn leaves, but they don't appear here. However, as you can see from the attached image or if you click on the Waseda University link above of the missing left-hand panel completing this triptych you will see her robe draped over a kimono stand.
The Takao/Yorikane plays were actually loosely based on true historical events "...related to the succession disputes within the Date clan in Sendai in the 1660s. The legitimacy of the daimyo Date Tsunamune and his heirs was challenged when it was disclosed that Tsunamune was enamored of the famous courtesan Takao II of the Great Miura bordello (the legend that inspired the kabuki play was a colorful mix of fact and fiction)."
Quoted from: "Wild Boars and Dirty Rats: Kyōka Surimono Celebrating Ichikawa Danjūrō VII as Arajishi Otokonosuke" by John T. Carpenter, Impressions, no. 28, 2006-2007, p. 47.
actor prints (yakusha-e - 役者絵) (genre)
Iwai Kumesaburō II (二代目岩井粂三郎) (actor)
Segawa Kikunojō V (五代目瀬川菊之丞) (actor)
Nishinomiya Shinroku (西宮新六) (publisher)
Ashikaga Yorikane (足利頼兼) (role)