Eisen: Courtesan with silhouettes
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Keisei Eisen (1790-1848)
A courtesan in front of a guest room where a party is going on; the silhouettes of her colleagues can be seen through the shôji sliding doors. Her obi is adorned by a full mon and a flying cuckoo, a symbol for the longing for an absent lover.
The picture in the cartouche shows an inn with green summer’s sudare curtains.
Title: Shigatsu, koromogae, aosudare – Daikoku-ya Hinanosuke (The Fourth Month: Changing Clothes, Green Bamboo Blinds – the courtesan Hinanosuke of the Daikokuya house)
Series: Shin Yoshiwara nenjû gyôji (Four Seasons in the Pleasure Quarters: Annual Events in the New Yoshiwara)
Signature: Keisei Eisen ga
Publisher: Daikokuya, Edo
Date: around 1830
Size: Vertical Oban, 36,5 x 25,8 cm
Very good impression and colours. Retains old backing. Some surface rubbing and soiling,. Very good overall condition. Verso small old French dealer's label.
Very rare image. Cf. MFA Boston, Bigelow Coll., no. 11.17915 (a somewhat earlier copy from the same blocks, however with curiously two more sandals in lower right corner). Catalogue Chiba City Museum of Art, Keisai Eisen: Artist of the Floating World, 2012, p. 286, no. 178-3.