N.1 ukiyo-e woodblock print
Year: 1824 ca.
Condition: good
Size: 25 x 37 cm

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«Bien Senjoko, the well-known popular face powder made by Sakamoto: admiring this famous product, what a beauty!» (美艶仙女香といふ坂本氏のせいする名高きおしろいに美人をよせて). At the top of this important woodblock print by Keisai Eisen (渓斎英泉) depicting a young woman, maybe a geisha (芸者), reading a letter while smoking a kiseru (煙管) pipe, we read the advertising slogan of an oshiroi (白粉) foundation that continues with a poem by Tozaian Nanboku (東西庵南北): «A famous beauty / sitting at the door / enjoys the coolness» (すゝみかな / 噂の美人 / 端ちかき).

The top right inset cartouche illustrates, instead, a view of pleasure boats at a bridge: the banners in the foreground may indicate a sumo (相撲) tournament near Ryogoku Bridge (両国橋), on the Sumida River (隅田川) in Edo (江戸), today’s Tokyo.

The precious print of the okubi-e (大首絵) type, produced around 1824 by the publisher Izumiya Ichibei (和泉屋市兵衛), owner of Kansendo (甘泉堂), despite the right signs of aging is in overall good condition.