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Utagawa Toyokuni

56 Discovered works of art  •  ID: #4560
Asian art   •   Utagawa Toyokuni @ Wikipedia

The Utagawa School, founded at the end of the 18th century, produced many renowned draftsmen of woodcarving. Utagawa Toyokuni was one of the most significant.

As the son of a doll maker, in the repertoire also figures of Kabuki, the popular Japanese theater form of the bourgeoisie, the stage characters were not unknown to him. But many years would pass before the 14-year-old apprentice of the school founder Utagawa Toyoharu found his own style. In 1786, he probably first came to light with drawings to a book. Actress portraits, stage scenes, but also images of beautiful women of the representation type of "bijin-ga" were his favorite subjects in the future and earned him the honor of the greatest artist of Ukiyo-e, the traditional Japanese genre painting. The sweep of the line and the vitality in the expression are the special features of his pictures; Colored accents and contrasts complete these representations. To capture the individuality of the actor was more important to him than to show a contrived and rigid figure or exaggerate in the reproduction. The highlight of his artistic output is the series "Yakusha butai no sugata-e" ("Pictures of actors on stage"). It appeared in more than 50 multicolored prints between 1794 and 1796 at the Edo (Tokyo) based publisher Izumiya Ichibei.

With nearly 3,000 woodblock prints, including more than 90 series and some painted scenes, Toyokuni was one of the most prolific Japanese illustrators of its kind and era. He made the Utagawa School the most influential of the Edo period. © Meisterdrucke

Segawa Kikunojô as Tomoe Gozen, ...
1825 | colour woodcut

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Segawa Kikunojô as Tomoe Gozen, ...
1825 | colour woodcut

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1794 | colour woodblock print

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1794 | colour woodblock print

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Nakamura Gennosuke as Suketsune,...
Undated | colour woodblock print

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Nakamura Gennosuke as Suketsune,...
0 | colour woodblock print

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1794 | colour woodblock print

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1794 | colour woodblock print

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Actor Ichikawa Danjuro VII in a ...
Undated | colour woodblock print

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Actor Ichikawa Danjuro VII in a ...
0 | colour woodblock print

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Ichikawa Ebizo III and Ichikawa ...
1798 | colour woodblock print

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Ichikawa Ebizo III and Ichikawa ...
1798 | colour woodblock print

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Undated | colour woodblock print

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The actor Ichikawa Danjuro VII i...
1823 | woodblock

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The actor Ichikawa Danjuro VII i...
1823 | woodblock

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1794 | colour woodblock print

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1794 | colour woodblock print

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1810 | Woodcut on paper

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1810 | Woodcut on paper

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The kabuki actors (left to right...
1813 | woodcut

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The kabuki actors (left to right...
1813 | woodcut

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1795 | colour woodblock print

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1795 | colour woodblock print

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