Ryūsai Shigeharu (柳斎重春) (artist 1802 – 1852)Baigansai (go - 梅丸斎)
Gokuryūsai (go - 玉柳斎)
Gyokuryūtei (go - 玉柳亭)
Jinjirō (nickname - 甚治郎)
Kiyōsai (go - 崎陽斎)
Nagasaki (go - 長崎)
Ryūsai (go - 柳斎)
Ryūtei (go - 柳亭)
Takigawa (family name - 滝川)
Yamaguchi (family name - 山口)
Names: Nagasaki Shigeharu (1821); Baigansai Kunishige (1821-26); Takigawa Kunishige (1825); Ryūsai Shigeharu (used at least as early as 8/1825); Gyokuryūtei Shigeharu (c. 1830-32); Gokuryūsai Shigeharu.
Dates: 1802-52; active circa 1821-1849
Surname Yamaguchi; personal names Yasuhide and Jinjirō; pupil of Utagawa Kunihiro; also associated with Yanagawa Shigenobu; co-designed with his teacher Kunihiro a print in 8/1825 bearing the Shigeharu signature; however, continued using the name Kunishige for a brief time (e.g., on a print dated 1/1826), apparently until the announcement of the change to Shigeharu on a print in 7/1826; born in Nagasaki but moved to Osaka to study with Kunihiro; Osaka address Mitsuderamachi, Shimanouchi.
Cited at the top of a list of block copyists on the single-sheet broadside Naniwa shoryū gajin meika annai ("Guide to the many famous contemporary artists of Osaka") circa 1831, where his address is given as Mitsuderamachi; mentioned in the 1835 book Naniwa zasshi chimata no uwasa (A miscellany of gossip about the town of Osaka), by Heitei Ginkei, as an artist who was "good at everything"; a manuscript providing biographies of writers and artists circa mid-1840s, Keisetsu gesakusha kô (Treatise on gesaku makers in Kyoto-Osaka) by Kimura Mokuô (Uyūsanjin), describes Shigeharu as the only Osaka artist of his time earning a living entirely from ukiyo-e print design (all the other artists supported themselves in different professions while making prints on the side; see TWOP), adding that "he was better than the rest" (also mentions Shigeharu's daughter, Yonejo, as a competent painter popular among foreign collectors).
Known to have designed single-sheet prints, illustrated books, theater billboards, theatrical programs, and paintings; productivity in single-sheet design peaked between 1829 -1831, with no prints currently known from mid-1822 until 8/1825; final year of activity in Osaka appears to have been 1838, but surviving specimens from that year are rare; apparently returned to his native Nagasaki in the early 1840s; probably not the same artist as one signing Kunishige from 1849 and after; also probably not the same artist signing as Shigeharu on prints dated circa 1849–51.
Pupils included Shigenao; Shigefusa; Shigeyasu; Shigetoyo; Shigeyoshi; Shigehiro; and Shigemasa.
This information is taken directly from Osakaprints.com.
Many of Shigeharu's prints are surimono or surimono-like and therefore lack any publisher's seal at all. However we do know that he was published by Tenmaya Kihei in 1821, 1829-30, 1832 and 1835, Honsei in 1830-31 and 1833 and Wataya Kihei in 1830-32 and 1836. He was also published jointly on single prints by all three publishers in 1837.
" Shigeharu is mentioned in the 1835 book Nanizoa zasshi chimata no uwasa ('A miscellany of gossip about the town of Osaka'), by Heitei Ginkei, as an artist who was 'good at everything'. A manuscript providing biographies of writers and artists circa mid-1840s, Keisetsu gesakusha kō ('Treatise on gesaku makers in Kyoto-Osaka') by Kimura Mokuō (Uyūsanjin), describes Shigeharu as the only artist of his time earning a living entirely from ukiyo-e print design, adding that 'he was better than the rest'. Shigeharu's productivity in single-sheet design peaked between 1829 -1831, with no prints currently known from mid-1822 until 8/1825. His final year of regular activity in Osaka appears to have been 1838, but surviving specimens from that year are rare. Shigeharu apparently returned to his native Nagasaki in the early 1840s."
Quoted from: 'Ryusai Shigeharu: 'Quick change' dances in the Utaemon tradition' by John Fiorillo and Peter Ujlaki in Andon 72 & 73, October, 2002, pp. 118-119.