Sōjūrō in the role of Yosaburō


Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Sōjūrō in the role of Yosaburō

by Yamamura Toyonari, 1915

The Heroine Koman in Tanba Yosaku from Woodblock Print Supplements to the Complete Works of Chikamatsu

IHL Cat. #2161

About This Print

This print is one twelve small format prints created by Toyonari for the short-lived 1915 magazine Shin Nigao whose purpose was to advertise the Kabuki theater and renew interest in actor prints. This print pictures the actor Sawamura Sōjūrō VII (1875-1949) playing the role of Yosaburō in the play Kirare Yosa (Scarface Yosaburō), or some variant thereof, playing at the The Imperial Theatre (Teikoku Gekijō) in April 1915. Yosaburō wears a scarf to conceal his face which has been mutilated by gangsters. The silver background of this print is impregnated with mica dust. This print appeared in the first issue of the magazine published in June 1915.

For more information on this short-lived magazine whose purpose was to advertise the Kabuki theater and renew interest in actor prints, see the article Shin Nigao Magazine.

Print Details

 IHL Catalog #2161
 Title [Sawamura] Sōjūrō [VII] [in the role of] Yosaburō
郎  (as printed in the table of contents of issue 1) 
 Series Magazine: Shin Nigao (New Portraits) volume one 新似顔 第一年初編
 Yamamura Toyonari (1885-1942)
Kōka 耕花

 Seal none
 Date June 1915
 Edition First and only edition printed in magazine Shin Nigao
 Publisher Nigaodō 似顔洞
 Carver Igami Bonkotsu (1875-1933)
 Printer Nakamura Sanjirō 中村三次郎
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition good - light overall toning; removed from original mounting sheet
 Genre shin hanga (new prints); nigao-e
 Format koban
 H x W Paper 7 1/4 x 4 13/16 in. (18.4 x 12.2 cm) 
 H x W Image 6 3/8 x 4 1/8 in. (16.2 x 10.5 cm)
 Collections This Print The British Museum 1991,1112,0.193.1 (entire magazine, only front cover shown); Art Research Center Ritsumeikan University BM-SJ193-01 (British Museum's copy of entire magazine with all pages shown)
 Reference Literature 
last update:
10/18/2019 created