Ippitsusai Bunchō (一筆斎文調, fl. 1755–1790) was a Japanese ukiyo-e artist, best known for his yakusha-e actor prints in narrow hosoban dimensions. Bunchō and Katsukawa Shunshō are credited with having developed kabuki actor portraiture focuses on producing likenesses of the subjects, rather than stereotyped faces.
The earliest known works attributed to Bunchō are the illustrations to Hachimonji Jishō II's Eiga asobi nidai otoko (1755). Between 1766 and 1774 he made a large number of actor prints in the narrow vertical hosoban dimensions. In 1770 he produced the three-volume Ehon butai ōgi (絵本舞台扇, "Picture-book of Stage Fans") with Katsukawa Shunshō, which depicts the leading kabuki actors of the day on ōgi hand fans; Bunchō handled the onnagata—male actors who portray female characters. It was popular and went through multiple printings.
From 1769 he also made bijin-ga prints of female beauties that show the influence of Suzuki Harunobu. These became his major subject, and in the An'ei era (1772–81) no actor prints of his are known.
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- Japan Ukiyo-e Association (1982). Genshoku Ukiyo-e Dai-Hyakka Jiten 原色 浮世絵大百科事典 第６巻 [Original Colour Grand Ukiyo-e Encyclopaedia]. 6. Taishūkan Publishing.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)
- Marks, Andreas (2012). Japanese Woodblock Prints: Artists, Publishers and Masterworks: 1680–1900. Tuttle Publishing. ISBN 978-1-4629-0599-7.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)