Kunisada was a Japanese artist famous for his woodblock
the Ukiyo-e period, many of these prints focused on the
“floating world” image.
Kunisada was particularly focused on this genre.
For instance, one of his most famous woodblock prints
is called Beauty with a Letter; Juronin with a Deer.
What you would see in this case is a Buddha floating
above the beauty. In
this case, woodblock prints such as this were often
associated with the Buddhist believe with the floatation
being the illusory quality of life.
Typically, woodblock prints focused had a distinct
focus on festivals and changing seasons, rituals,
landscapes, and illustrations of poetry.
However, at the end of the Edo period, all prints
made had to be approved by the Japanese government prior to
releasing and selling.
With Kunisada, he would often take everyday scenes
and transform them into something peaceful and serene.
In one instance, Kunisada added a dog, coupled with a
woman sitting while reading a letter. However, the depiction in the woodblock print was the dog
wanting to play, thus asking for her attention.
In addition, you would see, as the dog is trying to
interrupt the woman, she envisions Buddha in her mind, which
signifies the value and honor of religion.
The interesting thing about Kunisada’s work is the
influence of Buddha. Keep
in mind that many woodblock prints were focused on people or
scenes, not religion. Therefore,
his special skill makes the demand for his prints much
versatility has imprinted his name on Japanese history,
making him one of the most interesting artist’s of this