THE LOTUS LEAVES (Keisai Eisen)

$745.00

N.1 ukiyo-e woodblock print
Period: 1828-30
Condition: signs of aging
Size: 24,5 x 36,5 cm

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Description

Important original woodblock print of vertical large oban (大判) format, made by the artist Keisai Eisen (渓斎英泉) and depicting the courtesan Nagato (長門) of the house of pleasure Owariya (尾張屋). In the top left inset a poetic composition by Sojo Henjo (僧正遍昭): «How puzzling it seems / that lotus leaves untainted / by impurity / should nonetheless deceive us, / displaying dewdrops as gems» (はちすはの / にごりにしまぬ / 心もて / なにかはつゆを / 玉とあざむく).

The work, printed between 1828 and 1830 by the publisher Tsutaya Kichizo (蔦屋吉蔵), owner of Koeido (紅英堂), is taken from the “Six Excellent Selections of Courtesans” (傾城六佳撰), a series whose title consists in a pun that recalls the “six immortal poets” Rokkasen (六歌仙), with which the artist pairs six beauties of his time.

The precious print on Japanese washi paper (和紙) has the right signs of aging and, in particular, spots, defects on the margins and small holes and ancient restorations.