JAPANESE PRINTS

A MILLION QUESTIONS

TWO MILLION MYSTERIES

 

Ukiyo-e Prints

浮世絵版画

Port Townsend, Washington

 

 

Keisai Eisen

渓斎英泉

けいさいえいせん

1790-1848

A Beauty Representing Contemporary Joruri

Series Title: Tosei matsu no ha

"Modern Pine Needles"

当世松の葉

とうせいまつのは

Print Size: 14 3/4" x 10"

Mat Size: 20" x 16"

Date: Mid to late 1820s

Signature: Keisai Eisen ga

渓斎英泉画

Publisher: Joshuya Kinzō

上州屋金蔵

じょうしゅうやきんぞう

Condition: Good color. Two small paper losses in the lower right corner. Slight soiling.

Professionally matted and hinged.

ORIGINALLY  $780.00

NOW ON SALE FOR $480.00

SOLD!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the fascinating subtleties of Japanese woodblock prints of bijin or courtesans is that they often wear hair ornaments which are decorated with elements which are repeated on their robes or, as in this case, on a cloth in the background in the upper right corner. These are not capricious choices, but as yet are beyond my level of scholarship and therefore I would appreciate any assistance or suggestions in regard to this practice.

 

 

    

According to the Rietberg Museum catalogue the figure in the fan cartouche may represent the hero of a particular joruri play while the characters in the background are identified as the lyrics to that particular performance.

Illustrated: Masterpieces of Ukiyoe from the Rietberg Museum Zurich, page 120, number 208, left hand panel.

As an aside: I recently realized that I had made a typo repeated several times over a couple of pages misspelling the name Rietberg. I corrected it. That led me to a search of information about the Rietberg and found out that the main building is the Villa Wesendonck which was owned by patrons of Richard Wagner. Wagner stayed there and is said to have been so smitten with his hostess and as a result was inspired to compose "Tristan and Isolde."

 

 

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