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The Hundred Poets of the Inkstand by kuiyosh iutagawa 歌川 国芳 (1797-1861)

ukiyoe-3

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Attendants carrying a mikochi under the watchful eyes of a supervisor with a wooded pine  hill in the background

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125,00 €

This print is taken from an anthology of 100 poems by 100 poets spanning 13 centuries called Hyaku-nin isshu (百人一首). The poems are all five-line poems of 31 syllables arranged in 5, 7, 5, 7 and 7. This form was known as waka and is now known as tanka.

 

It’s number 16 of this serie.

 

This print is inspired by a poem by Yukihara Chunagon (-893), private conseillor to several emperors. He was the governor of the province of Inaba.

 

The poem is:

 

tachi wakare

 

Inaba no gama no

 

Mine ni ofuru

 

Matsu to shi

 

kikabaIma

 

kaeri-kon

 

being separated, if I hear

 

The pine-tree, growing upon the peaks

 

Of the mountain of Inaba,

 

(I shall) come-back immediately

 

This poem expresses the strong bond that binds the poet to his native land. Kuniyoshi represented in the back-yard the pine mountain but also the mikochi which is used during matsuri (Shintoist festivals) for the local deities. This reinforces the idea of ​​the link with love for his native land both forests and mountains but also these gods.

 Kuniyoshi Utagawa (1797-1861), 歌川国芳, Son of a silk dyer, he was born in 1797 under the name of Yoshizo. In his youth, he probably assisted his father, providing the designs for the pieces to be dyed, and thus naturally oriented himself towards the world of art. He was accepted as a pupil by Toyokuni Utagawa in 1814. Later, he founded his his own school and his drawings became popular. famous for his prints of actors and animals (especially cats that he adored), he owes his inspiration above all to legends, to the fantastic, poetic and warrior universe of which we find a strong influence in his work. He is the author of 10,000 prints and several series. The great earthquake of 1855, after which, returning home late, he was given for dead by his family and the members of his workshop, marks the end of his great period. Suffering from illness and depression, he now produces little. He died in Edo in 1861.

height17 cm
width12 cm
signaturekuniyoshi utagawa
date1843
publisherSaichi of Ichigaya
referencyrobinson S27.16