Kaigetsudō Ando, Courtesan entering a mosquito net, a hanging scroll painting

Japan
Hōei-Shōtoku era (AD 1704-16)

A mosquito-net tent has been set up over tatami mats spread with summer quilts. A courtesan turns to glance backwards as she enters. She is wearing a kimono of cool summer colours patterned with boughs of wisteria. The design uses yūzen dyeing techiques and tie-dyed knots enriched with gold embroidery, all of which have been skilfully differentiated by the artist. The gold roundels are built up in three-dimensional swirls of gesso covered in gold paint. The courtesan's fan (uchiwa) has a design of seasonal vine leaves.

The compositions of Kaigetsudō Ando's paintings of beautiful women were more inventive than those of his pupils who normally adopted the standing figure pose. Here Ando uses a delicacy of line which gives a gracefulness to the ample figure, as she raises the net with a slender hand. She is framed by the arching shape of the opening in the mosquito-net, while the thick skein of her hair is echoed in the curving folds of netting on the floor.

The signature reads: 'Nihon giga Kaigetsudō Ando kore [o] zu [su]' ('Light-hearted painting in Japanese style, this picture was done by Kaigetsudō Ando').

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More information

Bibliography

T. Clark, Ukiyo-e paintings in the Briti (London, The British Museum Press, 1992)

M. Narasaki (ed.), Hizō Ukiyo-e taikan, vol. 1 (Tokyo, Kodansha, 1987)

Dimensions

Height: 1060.000 mm
Width: 450.000 mm

Museum number

Asia JA JP 1387 (1913.5-1.0348)

JCF5130

Arthur Morrison Collection
Gift of Sir W. Gwynne-Evans, Bt.

Location

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