THE GHOST OF OKOME (Toyohara Kunichika)


N.1 ukiyo-e woodblock print
Year: 1893
Condition: very good
Size: 24 x 36 cm

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Okome (於米), servant of Otsuyu (お露), accompanies her mistress to visit the beloved Shinsaburo (新三郎) lighting up the darkness of the night with a peony lantern (牡丹燈籠) that gives out a dim and intermittent glow. The women are dead and the sound of the wooden clogs heralds the arrival of the two ghosts at the home of Shinsaburo, which we see depicted in the upper inset next to the large mosquito net suspended above his bed.

The woodcut presented here, made by the artist Toyohara Kunichika (豊原国周) and produced in June 1893 by the publisher Fukuda Kumajiro (福田熊次郎), owner of Gusokuya (具足屋), is entitled “The Ghost of Okome” (於米の霊) and is taken from the series “One Hundred Roles of Baiko” (梅幸百種之内), stage name of the actor Onoe Kikugoro V (五代目尾上菊五郎).

The print on Japanese washi paper (和紙), despite the right signs of aging and the presence of a reinforcement along the right margin, is in overall very good condition.