Japanese Art Treasures

Two Shikishi by Sanyaku Gyoji Sumo Referee Ikimori Isaburō II 式守伊三郎

Two Shikishi by Sanyaku Gyoji Sumo Referee Ikimori Isaburō II 式守伊三郎


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Directory: Artists: Folk Art: Pre 1990: Item # 1478726
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Ikimori Isaburō II 2代 式守伊三郎 (1925-1987) had a successful career as both professional sumo wrestler and later referee of the top tier bouts. He was born in Hokkaidō and started training in 1936, reaching Makuuchi division in 1956. In 1962 he received referee name of Ikimori Isaburō II. While he was passed for several promotions, he was larger than life figure, both literally and figuratively, being dubbed “Giant Referee (Gyōji)” by NHK, and “Eternal Sanyakū” by fans for the 24 year long role in top tier but not being promoted to tategyōji rank. He passed away while active at age of 62, and name of Ikimori Isaburō had been dormant since. Shikishi are each depicting a single auspicious character in calligraphy style called Sumōmoji, Happiness (福) and Longevity (寿), which are often paired. Each is handwritten, ink on paper, 25.1 x 24 cm. Both are from mid-1980s, and were brushed on boards b y two different manufacturers- shade of white is slightly different, as is the treatment of he back. Shikishi are in good condition, minor foxing on front of Longevity piece, extensive on the back. Minor abrasions on both. A transcription of all inscriptions and seals accompany the Certificate of Authenticity.