The signatures of Kunichika

Ukiyo-e artists were famous for having many different styles of signature throughout their careers and often these can help you pin-point a rough date range for when a print was produced. In the case of the artist known to us all as Toyohara Kunichika (b1835-d1900) [豊原国周], whose real name was Arakawa Yasohachi [荒川八十八], he changed his signature quite a lot at the start of his career but then for the latter half he settled down to one or two variations. 

Signatures ending with “ga” (artist)

These are nearly always prints from the 1850s and early 1860s.

Signatures ending with “hitsu” (brush)

1860s to his death in 1900.

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