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Yoshimune, Arai

Utagawa Yoshimune II (1863-1941), who went by the name of Arai Yoshimune, was the eleventh and youngest son of Utagawa Yoshimune I (1817-1880) and spent his childhood residence in the Kinroku-chō area of Tokyo. At a young age he studied with the famous ukiyo-e artist Tsukioka Yoshitoshi (1839-1892) and he assumed the name Toshiyuki at age thirteen. After his father’s death he was adopted by the Arai family. He succeeded his father in 1882 to become Yoshimune II and occasionally used his father’s art name Isshōsai, along with the adopted name Arai Yoshimune.

Arai worked as illustrator and print designer, with much/most of his known work printed by either the Hasegawa or Nishinomiya publishing houses, his most famous contributions coming as part of Hasegawa’s Night Scenes.

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