Memorial prints (Shini-e)

Part I

 

Memorial prints, also called ôdeath printsö and ôshini-eö commemorated the death of actors, artists and musicians, but the vast majority commemorated kabuki actors.á They typically portray the recently deceased actor in light blue robes (shini s˘zoku), and often include such information as the date of death, age, posthumous Buddhist name (kaimy˘), and place of burial.á The largest production of memorial prints followed the suicide of Ichikawa Danjűr˘ VIII on August 8, 1854.á Many memorial prints are unsigned, and were produced by artists of very modest talent in response to a large demand from the deceased actorĺs fans.

 

Actor: Band˘ Mitsugor˘ III

Date: 1831

Publisher: Matsumura Tatsuemon

 

I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

 

Actor: Band˘ Mitsugor˘ III

Date: 1831

Text: 坂東三津五郎 行年五十七才 天保二卯年十二月廾七日 実誉秀佳信士 芝増上寺地中常照院

Publisher: Kaga-ya Kichiemon

 

I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

Actors: Memorial portraits of actors Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川 菊之丞, left) and Band˘ Mitsugor˘ III (坂東 三津五郎, right)

Date: 1832

Publisher: Kawaguchi-ya Ch˘z˘

Actors: Memorial portraits of actors Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川 菊之丞, left) and Band˘ Mitsugor˘ III (坂東 三津五郎, right)

Date: 1832

Publisher: Kaga-ya Kichiyemon

 

I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

Actors: Memorial portraits of actors Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川 菊之丞, left) and Iwai Hanshir˘ VI (岩井 半四郎, right)

Date: 1836

Publisher: Izumi-ya Ichibei

Sheet from another state of the above design

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞)

Date: 1832

Publisher: Kawaguchi-ya Ch˘z˘

 

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞)

Date: 1832

Publisher: Yamaguchi-ya Tobei

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞)

Date: 1832

Publisher: Kawaguchi-ya Ch˘z˘

 

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞)

Date: 1832

Text: 天保三年壬辰正月六日 行年三十一才 五代目 瀬川菊之丞 勇誉才阿哲芸信士 本所押上泰雲寺

Publisher: Shimizu-ya

 

I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞)

Date: 1832

Publisher: Oden

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V sitting with incense

Date: 1832

Publisher: Izumi-ya Ichibei

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞) with prayer beads and butterflies

Date: 1832

Publisher: Kaga-ya Kichiyemon

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞) seated with incense

Date: 1832

Publisher: J˘shű-ya Kinz˘

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞)

Date: 1832

Publisher: Kawaguchi-ya Ch˘z˘

 

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞)

Date: 1832

Publisher: Matsumura Tatsuemon

 

I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞)

Date: 1832

Text: 天保三壬辰正月六日 瀬川菊之丞 行年三十一才

Publisher: Daikoku-ya

 

I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞)

Date: 1832

Text: 坂東三津五郎 行年五十七才 天保二年卯十二月廾七日 実誉秀佳信士 芝増上寺地中常照院

Publisher: Kawaguchi-ya Sh˘z˘

 

I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

 

Actor: Band˘ Mitsugor˘ III (坂東三津五郎, top) and Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞, bottom)

Date: 1832

Text: 天保二年極月廾七日 芝増上寺寺内常照院 行年五十七才 坂東三津五郎 同三年壬辰正月七日本所押上大雲寺 行年三十一才 瀬川菊之丞 勇誉才阿哲芸信士

Publisher: Yamaguchi-ya Tobei

 

I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞, left) and Band˘ Mitsugor˘ III (坂東三津五郎, right)

Date: 1st month of 1832

Publisher: Kawaguchi-ya Ch˘z˘

 

Actor: Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞), Band˘ Mitsugor˘ III (坂東三津五郎) and Sawamura Tanosuke II (沢村田之助)

Date: 1832

Publisher: Ezaki-ya Tatsuz˘

Actor: Diptych showing Segawa Kikunoj˘ V (瀬川菊之丞, left) and Band˘ Mitsugor˘ III (坂東三津五郎, right)

Date: 1832

Publisher: Ezaki-ya Tatsuz˘

 

I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

Actor: Ichikawa Danjűr˘ VIII

Date: 1854

Publisher: No seal

 

NOTE: This print shows women mourning the suicide of actor Ichikawa Danjűr˘ VIII.á The composition of this print is normally used to portray the death of the Buddha.á Animals are frequently included among the Buddhaĺs mourners, and in this unsigned print, the single crying cat serves as Kuniyoshiĺs signature.á

 

Actor: Possibly a memorial print of an unidentified actor in the role of Nichiren

Date: 1850

Publisher: under a single mountain is identified as Hori Takichi of Yushima in Kuniyoshi by B. W. Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961), but as ďta-ya Takichi in Publishers of Japanese Woodblock Prints: A Compendium by Andreas Marks (Hotei Publishing, Leiden, 2011)

 

NOTE: This print is part of an untitled series of prints showing busts of actors in front of archery targets

 

Title: Ken of the Three Buddhas (Sanbutsu ken)

Actors: Onoe Matsunosuke (standing left), Ichimura Uzaemon XII (sitting) and Matsumoto K˘shir˘ VI (right)

Date: 10th month of 1851

Publisher: No seal

 

 

Title: Ken of the Three Buddhas (Sanbutsu ken)

Description: A memorial print (shini-e) for actors Ichikawa Danjűr˘ VIII (standing left), Ichimura Uzaemon XII (sitting) and Nakamura Utaemon IV (right)

Date: 1854

Publisher: No seal

 

I am grateful to Marc DeVriese for this image.

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