CLOSE-UP OF A BIJIN (Utagawa Kunisada)

N.1 uchiwa-e woodblock print
Period: 20th century
Condition: very good
Size: 36,5 x 27 cm



Fine woodblock reprint of a work of the uchiwa-e (団扇絵) type, that is intended for the decoration of a bamboo uchiwa (団扇) fan, depicting the close-up of a bijin (美人) beauty and signed “Gototei Kunisada” (五渡亭国貞), that is the most common pseudonym used by Utagawa Kunisada (歌川国貞) before 1844 and which literally means “Kunisada of the Fifth Ferry Pavilion”, a reference to the ferry service owned by his family.

The uchiwa fan is one of the most popular accessories of Japanese women since the 6th century and, born as an object of daily use, it soon became also a small work of art to be carried as a manifestation of the mood as well as of good taste.

The horizontal large oban (大判) format woodblock print on Japanese washi paper (和紙) is in very good condition.