THE MONTH OF LOVE (Utagawa Yoshiiku)

N.1 ukiyo-e woodblock print
Year: 1869
Condition: good
Size: 24 x 35 cm



Valuable polychrome woodblock print of vertical large oban (大判) format made by Utagawa Yoshiiku (歌川芳幾), the famous artist also known as Ochiai Yoshiiku (落合芳幾), and depicting the courtesan Imamurasaki (今紫) of the house of pleasure Matsumotoro (松本楼) together with her two young kamuro (禿) assistants. In the background two kadomatsu (門松), the traditional Japanese New Year’s decorations.

The work, produced in August 1869 by the publisher Tsunajima Kamekichi (綱島亀吉), is taken from the “Twelve Months of Yoshiwara” (よし原十二ヶ月の内), an elegant series of prints dedicated to the famous red light district of Edo (江戸), and is paired with the “month of love” Mutsuki (睦月), that is January.

The print on Japanese washi paper (和紙), despite the right signs of aging, is in good general condition.