Yoshitora Utagawa, High-rank Courtesan, Bijin-ga, Kimono Design

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Original Japanese woodblock print. 

Artist: Yoshitora Utagawa (Active in 1850-1880)
Title: Oiran Bijin (High-rank courtesan)
Publisher: Izumiya Ichibei
Date: 1859
Size: (T) 24 x 36 (B) 24 x 35.5 cm
Condition: Light water stains. Some wear on the edges and thin areas. Light soiling and some paper residue on the back. Pinholes.

Courtesans of Edo period Japan were not only skilled in serving a male customer, but they were also experts in dance, music, conversation, and other kinds of entertainment. They operated within the licensed quarters, such as the Yoshiwara district. They had a complex system of ranks, etiquette, and procedures. A courtesan would earn her funds not only for herself, but also for her entire entourage, e.g. attendants, younger courtesans-in-training.

This courtesan is dressed in a spring-themed kimono while she looks to her left. On her garments, two sparrows are perched on the branches of a blossoming tree. She wears lacquered koma-geta, a tall traditional Japanese footwear of high-ranking courtesans.

More Information
Print Format Kakemono- e (Scroll)
Artist Name Yoshitora Utagawa
Title Oiran Bijin (High-rank courtesan)
Subject Beauty & Female, Kimono Design
Dimensions (T) 24 x 36 (B) 24 x 35.5 cm
Publisher Izumiya Ichibei