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Utagawa Kunisada

Japanese, 1786-1864

Occupation or Type

print designer


Utagawa Kunisada, a pupil of Toyokuni, was trained to specialize in actor prints and bijin ga. His younger contemporary, Utagawa Hiroshige (1797-1858), was not as skilled at figures, but found his métier in landscapes. Soon after the spectacular success of Hiroshige's Fifty-three Stations of the Tôkaidô, which was originally issued in 1833-1834, the two artists began a number of fruitful collaborations, often with Hiroshige providing the background for Kunisada's figures.

In 1844, Kunisada adopted the name Toyokuni, after his teacher Toyokuni I, and thereafter used the name Toyokuni in his signatures. (Another artist, Toyoshige, who was also a pupil of Toyokuni I and his son-in-law, had held the name Toyokuni from 1825 to 1835, i.e. between the demise of Toyokuni I and his own death. Hence, Kunisada is considered Toyokuni III.)



Related People

Associate of: Utagawa Hiroshige (Japanese, 1797-1858)

Student of: Utagawa Toyokuni (Japanese, 1769-1825)

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