Fukusuke Fitted to One’s Thoughts

(Omou ni kanai Fukusuke, おもう事叶福助)

Publisher: Kobayashi Tajirô

c. 1845

 

Fukusuke is one of the seven gods of good luck.  He is usually portrayed as a dwarf with a large head.  This series is listed as 177 in Kuniyoshi by Basil William Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961).  The images are each about 7 by 10 inches (18 by 25 centimeters), a size known as chűban.  Two images were printed on a sheet of paper about 14 by 10 inches (36 by 25 centimeters), a size known as ôban.

 

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Description: Fukusuke having trouble getting his head through a door and Fukusuke’s head as a paper lantern

 

 

Title: Defying a sliding door (Fusuma yaburi) and sedan chair (kago)

Description: This scene illustrates the popular Edo pastime of ‘head pulling’ (kubihiki) - a trial of strength.  Fukusuke has ruined the sliding door with his enormous head

Kuniyoshi - Fukusuke Fitted to One's Thoughts (R177) CIMG2330

 

Title: A feast (Gochisô) and atamazori on bottom

Description: Fukusuke is attending a wedding reception.  When congratulating the couple Fukusuke’s enormous head is causing a chaotic scene ruining the feast.  The groom, a geisha holding a samisen and a child are quickly getting out of the way.  Bottom: four men are shaving Fukusuke’s enormous head.

 

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