Posted by Paul Griffith (220.127.116.11) on February 22, 2017 at 07:50:31:
In Reply to: Actor by Toyokuni ? posted by LAPORTE Jean-Baptist on February 21, 2017 at 21:36:21:
The artist is Toyokuni I, and your print shows the Kabuki actor Bando Mitsugoro III. He is performing a dance that illustrated the custom (especially for aristocrats in the Heian Period) of pulling up young pine tree saplings on the first Day of the Rat in the New Year. The custom was known as 'komatsu-hiki', which was also the name of this dance section. At the top-right, inside the circle, you have the character 'Ne', 'Rat', which is the first of the twelve animals of the zodiac. Next to that is the line reading 'Junishi no uchi', meaning 'one of the 12 Signs of the Zodiac'. The design actually depicts the first of twelve dance sections, each illustrating one of the 12 signs, that had the collective title 'Yosete-mitsu Matamo Junishi'. This was staged at the Nakamura-za Theatre in the 3rd month of 1814.
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