Kabuki Actor Ōtani Oniji III as Yakko Edobei

Tōshūsai Sharaku Japanese

Not on view

Ōtani Oniji III is depicted here in the role of a samurai’s manservant from the play The Colored Reins of a Loving Wife (Koi nyōbō somewake tazuna). The actor’s leering face, shown in three-quarter view, his bristling hair, and his groping outstretched hands capture the ruthless nature of this wicked henchman. Sharaku was able to capture the essential qualities of Kabuki characters but also reveal the personalities of the actors who were famous for performing them.

Kabuki Actor Ōtani Oniji III as Yakko Edobei, Tōshūsai Sharaku (Japanese, active 1794–95), Woodblock print; ink, color, and white mica on paper, Japan

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