Skip to content

The Five Festivals - Spring Festival

Kunisada I (Toyokuni III), 1849, Wood cut
The Five Festivals - Spring Festival
The Five Festivals - Spring Festival
The Five Festivals - Spring Festival
Library Item
Item no
Untitled series referencing The Five Seasonal Festivals, Spring Festival, January and March - the 1st and 3rd Months (Go sekku no uchi)
Unidentified dance drama featuring characters associated with the New Year celebrations. The female character who ceremoniously pulls up small pines is played by a male Kabuki actor, and wears highly decorative theatrical costume. The textile design is made up of auspicious symbols: Shinto sacred ropes (shimenawa), Shinto folded paper offerings (gohei), evergreen pines and lobsters (the lobster's curved back suggested old age and longevity). Upon her fan lies a branch of pine, one of the three 'Gentleman Scholar's Winter Friends' that symbolized hope, perseverance and endurance during the winter months.
The male character, dressed as a Yabusame, rides a pantomime horse and carries a bow and arrows. Shooting an arrow was one of the ceremonial 'Firsts' that took place at the beginning of the New Year. There is also a reference in the print to the early approach of Children's Day (the 3rd day of the 3rd month).
Artist / maker
Kunisada I (Toyokuni III)
37 x 29 cm.
Art and Design Library
Rights and purchasing
Digital FileElectronic file 72 dpi JPEG
£6.10(inc. VAT 20%)
Digital FileElectronic File 300 dpi TIFF
£31.00(inc. VAT 20%)
You can view and use digital images for personal and educational use. For more information, read our policy on image use. If you wish to use our images for commercial use, please contact us.