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[AC] Mead Art Museum at Amherst College; [HC] Hampshire College Art Gallery;
[HD] Historic Deerfield; [MH] Mount Holyoke College Art Museum; [MH SK] The Joseph Allen Skinner Museum at Mount Holyoke College; [SC] Smith College Museum of Art; [UM] University Museum of Contemporary Art at UMASS Amherst

 


Maker(s):Seitoku, Gion
Culture:Japanese (1781-circa 1829)
Title:Portrait Bust of Bijin
Date Made:18th century
Type:Painting
Materials:color and ink on silk scroll
Measurements:Image: 31 3/4 in x 14 3/8 in; 80.645 cm x 36.5125 cm
Accession Number:  AC 2000.453
Credit Line:Museum purchase
2000-453detail.jpg

Label Text:
This bust portrait most likely portrays a high-ranking courtesan from Shimabara, the main brothel district in Kyoto. Displaying the refined fashion sense characteristic of the world of pleasure in Edo-period Japan, she is portrayed wearing a blue outer robe; beneath the robe is a white kimono and an undergarment decorated with a complex arabesque of chrysanthemums. Her elaborate hairdo is enhanced with hairpins and combs that are made of tortoiseshell.
Seitoku was one of the best-known ukiyo-e painters in Kyoto during the early decades of the nineteenth century.
Seitoku has added his customary signature to this work, “Heian Seitoku,” Seitoku of Heian, the early name of Kyoto. His family name, Gion, is taken from the other pleasure quarters in the city where he is traditionally said to have lived.
Samuel Morse, Howard M. and Martha P. Mitchell Professor of the History of Art and Asian Languages and Civilizations, Amherst College

Tags:
portraits; women; figures; text; headdresses

Link to share this object record:
https://museums.fivecolleges.edu/detail.php?t=objects&type=ext&id_number=AC+2000.453

Research on objects in the collections, including provenance, is ongoing and may be incomplete. If you have additional information or would like to learn more about a particular object, please email fc-museums-web@fivecolleges.edu.

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