Taishou actor portraits

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Posted by Darrel C. Karl ( on July 12, 2018 at 22:41:22:


I recently acquired a set of 17 small actor portraits. Most are undated but a few have a 1914 date printed in the margins. They are similar to ones designed by Baidou Housai (Kunimasa IV/Kunisada III) late in his career. They employ burnishing, mica, embossing, etc., so some time and money was spent on their production. Near as I can tell, they were published by Nagamitsu (though I can't find such a publisher's name in Marks' book), carved by Katori, and printed by Buchirou. I can't quite read the artist's name, though. The red seal appears to have the letter u written in hiragana, which I don't associate with any kabuki artist of the period. Any help confirming the identity of the artist would be appreciated.

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