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Updated: 14 April 2015
Edo kanjin ozumo uki-e no zu 江都勧進大相撲浮絵之図 (Perspective Picture of a Grand Fundraising Sumo Tournament in Edo)
- Edo kanjin ozumo uki-e no zu 江都勧進大相撲浮絵之図 (Perspective Picture of a Grand Fundraising Sumo Tournament in Edo)
Colour woodblock print. Fundraising sumo bout between Tanikaze (right with back to viewer) and Onogawa (left).
- Made in: Japan
- Height: 11.5 inches
- Width: 16.75 inches
Inscription TransliterationKoto kanjin o-sumo uki-e no zu
Inscription Commentitem title
Inscription CommentShunsho, Katsukawa
Sumo took off as a major public preoccupation in Edo in 1782, with the shock defeat after an unbroken run of sixty-three victories of champion Tanikaze by a young newcomer from Osaka, Onogawa. It may have been this event that prompted Shunsho, as part of a general quest for new subjects for his ever-more realist style, to begin designing portraits of individual wrestlers. Sumo tournaments generally took place for 'ten fine days' in a temporary stadium constructed in the grounds of Eko-in Temple in Honjo district. In addition to the present 'perspective view' (uki-e) of a match in progress, Shunsho also did a view of wrestlers crossing Ryogoku Bridge, followed by an enthusiastic crowd. (Label copy, TTC, 1999.) The area of the print around the wrestlers shows evidence of having been plugged. See Bickford, Sumo and the Woodblock Print Masters, 1994, figs. 23-5, p. 80 (TTC).
2014 July-October, BM Japanese Galleries, 'Japan Prehistory to the Present'
- Topographic representation of: Ryogoku
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Object reference number: JCF6683
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