Takigawa of the Ōgiya from the series A Selection of Eastern Beauties

Utamaroc. 1798

The Cleveland Museum of Art

The Cleveland Museum of Art
Cleveland, United States

The courtesan Takigawa worked for the Ōgiya, "House of Fans" brothel, one of the most prestigious in the Yoshiwara. Here, she smokes tobacco, a fashionable trend in 18th-century Edo. Fashion-conscious women in Edo purchased prints of the most famous beauties just as contemporary women buy fashion magazines to learn about the latest styles in make-up and hair. The strands of hair at her temple were printed from thin pieces of wood left in relief when the areas on either side of them were carved away.

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  • Title: Takigawa of the Ōgiya from the series A Selection of Eastern Beauties
  • Creator: Kitagawa Utamaro (Japanese, c. 1754–1806)
  • Date Created: c. 1798
  • Physical Dimensions: Sheet: 33 x 22.3 cm (13 x 8 3/4 in.)
  • Provenance: (S. H. Mori, Chicago, IL), Edward L. Whittemore [1862–1930], Cleveland, OH, bequest to the Cleveland Museum of Art, The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH
  • Type: Print
  • Rights: CC0
  • External Link: https://clevelandart.org/art/1930.219
  • Medium: color woodblock print
  • Original Title: 吾妻美人ゑらみ 扇屋内滝川
  • Inscriptions: Signature: Utamaro hitsu
  • Fun Fact: Takigawa became the most senior courtesan of the Ōgiya following the retirement of Hanaōgi.
  • Department: Japanese Art
  • Culture: Japan, Edo period (1615-1868)
  • Credit Line: Bequest of Edward L. Whittemore
  • Collection: Japanese Art
  • Accession Number: 1930.219

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