Utagawa Kuniteru II

Utagawa Kuniteru II ニ代 歌川国輝 (1830-1874)   

BIOGRAPHY

Sources: The Hotei Encyclopedia of Japanese Woodblock Prints, Amy Reigle Newland, Hotei Publishing Company, 2005, p. 503; A Dictionary of Japanese Artists: Painting, Sculpture, Ceramics, Prints, Lacquer, Laurance P. Roberts, Weatherhill, 1976, p. 97-98.

Utagawa Kuniteru II (1830-1874)1 was born Yamada Kunijirō 山田国次郎 in Edo (Tokyo) and was a print designer, painter and book illustrator. He studied under Utagawa Kunisada I (1786–1865). He produced yakusha-e (actor pictures), bijinga (beautiful women pictures), fuzokuga (pictures of manors and customs), meisho-e (pictures of famous places) sumo-e (pictures of wrestlers), educational prints and, most famously, bunmei kaika-e (pictures of modernization) in a late Utagawa-school manner.

True Picture of a Five-Story Building at Kaiun Bridge (Mitsui House) First National Bank of Japan, 1872

Utagawa Kuniteru II

Source: Japan Awakens: Woodblock Prints of the Meiji Period (1868-1912),

Barry Till, Pomegranate Communications, Inc., 2008, p. 90.

He was known by various names, including the artist names () Ichiyōsai 一曜斎, Ichiyūsai 一雄斎, Yōsai 曜斎, Ichiransai 一蘭斎, and Kunitsuna II 国綱 (ニ代), Ichiransai Kunitsuna 一蘭斎国綱 and Ikkasai Kunitsuna. Before 1844 he may also have been known as Sadashige 貞重 and signed works with the name Ichiyūsai. He changed his name in 1865 to Kuniteru II.


For more information on this artist and other artists using the name Kuniteru see Utagawa Kuniteru 初代 歌川国輝 (active c. 1820-1860) 


1 A Dictionary of Japanese Artists, lists his birth date as 1829, but most other sources list it as 1830.

Signatures and Seals of the Artist (a sampling)

 国綱画

Kunitsuna ga

 国綱画

Kunitsuna ga within Toshidama cartouche

一蘭斎国綱画

Ichiransai Kunitsuna ga

一蘭斎国綱画

Ichiransai Kunitsuna ga

国輝画 Kuniteru ga

国輝画

Kuniteru ga

 


国輝画 Kuniteru ga within gourd-shaped cartouche

国輝筆 Kuniteru hitsu followed by Toshidama seal

国輝筆 Kuniteru hitsu followed by Toshidama seal

一雄斎国輝画

Ichiyūsai Kuniteru ga

一雄斎国輝画

Ichiyūsai Kuniteru ga

followed by Toshidama seal

一雄斎国輝画

Ichiyūsai Kuniteru ga

一曜斎国輝画

Ichiyōsai Kuniteru ga

応需 一曜斎国輝 冩〓

ōju Ichiyōsai Kuniteru

 followed by unread

曜斎国輝画

Yōsai Kuniteru ga

曜齋国輝摸寫

Yōsai Kuniteru mosha

Prints in Collection

[BELOW PRINTS GIFTED TO THE JORDAN SCHNITZER MUSEUM OF ART, UNIVERSITY OF OREGON]

click on thumbnail for print details

Educational Prints Attributed to Kuniteru II or The School of Kuniteru II

Rice Storage

from an untitled series on

the Rice Plant, 1873

(attributed to the school of

Utagawa Kuniteru II)

IHL Cat. #633*

[Principles and Applications of the] Wheel and Axle from an untitled series on Mechanics, 1873

(attributed to the school of

Utagawa Kuniteru II)

IHL Cat. #765 and

IHL Cat. #2055*

[Principles and Applications of the] Lever

from an untitled series on Mechanics, 1873

(attributed to the school of

Utagawa Kuniteru II)

IHL Cat. #766*

[Principles and Applications of the] Wedge from an untitled series on Mechanics, 1873

(attributed to the school of

Utagawa Kuniteru II)

IHL Cat. #767*

Thomas Carlyle

from the series Legends of Great Westerners, 1873

(attributed to the school of

Utagawa Kuniteru II)

IHL Cat. #1970*

Richard Arkwright

from the series Legends of

Great Westerners, 1873

(attributed to the school of

Utagawa Kuniteru II)

IHL Cat. #1971*

Benjamin Franklin

from the series Legends of

Great Westerners, 1873

(attributed to the school of

Utagawa Kuniteru II)

IHL Cat. #2054*