Tsukioka Kogyo, "Akogi"
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This Noh woodblock print by Kogyo tells the story of a fisherman’s encounter with an old man who shares the tale of Akogi, who was executed for illegal fishing at the eponymous beach. The old man turns out to be the spirit of Akogi who cries out to the fisherman to save him from his damnation. The contrast of the actor dressed as Akogi set against a dark background is a standout composition.
Noh is a dramatic dance-form of theatre developed in the 14th century based on otherworldly literary tales. In addition to the extreme skills of the performer, Noh’s defining aesthetic features is the use of masks and elaborate costumes, which helps to punctuate the mood of characters.
Series: Pictures of Noh
Date: c. 1898
Size: Oban (approx. 10” x 14”)
Publisher: Matsuki Heikichi
Shown in Modern Metal, Walnut Frame
Tsukioka Kogyo (1869-1927) is a widely recognized Meiji-period artist of Noh woodblock prints. A student and adopted son of the master Tsukioka Yoshitoshi, Kogyo’s Noh prints epitomize the styling of Meiji-period woodblock prints. Tokaido Arts is pleased to present some of his more standout designs from his “Pictures of Noh” series of woodblock prints.