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Artist: Utagawa Toyokuni II (二代目歌川豊国)

Alternate names:
Genzō (nickname - 源蔵)
Gosotei or Kōsotei ( 後素亭)
Ichibetsusai ( - 一鼈斎)
Ichiesai ( - 一瑛斎)
Ichiryūsai ( - 一龍斎)
Kunishige ( - 国重)
Gosotei Toyokuni ( 後素亭豊国)
Utagawa Toyoshige (歌川豊重)

Lifetime: 1777 - 1835

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Biography:

"Lived in Hongō in Edo working as a pottery dealer. Pupil and son-in-law of Toyokuni. After the death of his master in 1825, called himself Toyokuni II but was challenged by other followers of Toyokuni and changed his name to Toyoshige. From 1826 signed Toyokuni or Gosotei Toyokuni, commonly known as Hongō Toyokuni after the district in which he lived. In later years, resumed name of Toyoshige. His prints of actors and bijin in Toyokuni's manner, and often confused with his work, have little merit, but in his landscape series, which owe much to Hokuju and Hokusai, he can be compared to Hiroshige. Also illustrated storybooks."

Quoted from: A Dictionary of Japanese Artists... by Laurance P. Roberts, pp. 186-187.

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The British Museum says of this artist: "Painter and print artist. Lived in Hongo Haruki-cho (c. 1828). Pupil of Toyokuni I, adopted by him in the New Year of 1824, or before. Earliest works c. 1823. Known for prints of actors and 'bijin' and illustrations for 'gokan'. In 1825 assumed the name Toyokuni II on the death of Toyokuni I. In early 1830s designed some fine landscape prints and did a few paintings. No works known after c. 1835 and is assumed to have died or given up painting. Said to have run a pottery business, but this is not proven."

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Utagawa Toyokuni II (1777–1835), also known as Toyoshige, was a designer of ukiyo-e Japanese woodblock prints in Edo. He was the pupil, son-in-law and adopted son of Toyokuni I. The former used the name Toyoshige (豊重) until 1826, the year after his teacher’s death, when he began signing his work Toyokuni (豊国). Kunisada, another student of Toyokuni I, did not recognize Toyoshige’s claim and declared himself “Toyokuni” and leader of the school. Toyoshige resumed signing his work “Toyoshige”.

Toyokuni I, Toyokuni II (Toyoshige), and Toyokuni III (Kunisada) each used the signature Toyokuni (豊国). The signature of Toyokuni II is easiest to distinguish by the chalice-shaped toyo (豊) kanji.

Toyoshige’s students include Utagawa Kunimatsu, Utagawa Kunishige II, Utagawa Kuniteru III, and Utagawa Kunitsuru I.

This information was taken directly from Wikipedia.

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For whatever reason, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston give his dates at ca. 1802 to 1835.

Related Entity

Utagawa Toyokuni I (初代歌川豊国) (is related to)