Fireflies in Darkness (Yami no hotaru)

「闇のほたる」

Japanese
Edo period
1847–52 (Kôka 4–Kaei 5)
Artist Utagawa Kunisada I (Toyokuni III) (Japanese, 1786–1864), Other artist Utagawa Kunisada II (Kunimasa III, Toyokuni IV) (Japanese, 1823–1880), Publisher Kawaguchiya Uhei (Fukusendô) (Japanese)


Catalogue Raisonné

Marks et al., Genji's World (2012), list #G501 (no photo)

Dimensions

Vertical ôban triptych; 36.4 x 75.9 cm (14 5/16 x 29 7/8 in.)

Accession Number

11.43545a-c

Medium or Technique

Woodblock print (nishiki-e); ink and color on paper

Not On View

Collections

Asia, Prints and Drawings

Classifications

Prints

MFA impressions: 11.45207a-b (two right sheets), 11.43545a-c (complete triptych)

Signed

Kôchôrô Toyokuni ga (right sheet), Ichiyôsai Toyokuni ga (center sheet), Kunisada aratame Toyokuni ga (left sheet); Monjin Ichijusai hitsu (on background in left sheet)

香蝶楼豊国画(年玉印) 一陽斎豊国画(年玉印) 国貞舎豊国画(年玉印)、門人一寿斎筆(松皮菱印)

Markings

Censors' seals: Fuku, Muramatsu
No blockcutter's mark

改印:福、村松
彫師:なし

Provenance

By 1911, purchased by William Sturgis Bigelow (b. 1850–d. 1926), Boston [see note 1]; 1911, gift of Bigelow to the MFA. (Accession Date: January 19, 2005)

NOTES:
[1] Much of Bigelow's collection of Asian art was formed during his residence in Japan between 1882 and 1889, although he also made acquisitions in Europe and the United States. Bigelow deposited many of these objects at the MFA in 1890 before donating them to the Museum's collection at later dates.

Credit Line

William Sturgis Bigelow Collection