Artist: Katsukawa Shunsen (勝川春好)

Print: An elegant oiran wearing a winter kimono decorated with a dragon.

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Dates: created,circa 1825 - 1830
Dimensions: Overall dimensions

Signed: Katsukawa Shunsen ga
Seal (in red): Shun

Related links: British Museum - printed as a nishiki-e; Fine Arts Museums, San Francisco;

Physical description:

As with most kakemono or hanging scrolls there is no publisher's seal. This particular image was printed both as a nishiki-e or brocade image and as an aizuri-e or picture done mainly in blue. That variation in color might be an indication of its popularity.

The strength or depth of the blues on this piece would indicate that it was printed with the newly imported Prussian blue inks. That would mean that this kakemono can be dated to no earlier than ca. 1825.


It should be noted that the 'Shun' seal seen below the signature takes the form of a bat, a propitious symbol, with its wings finishing off the circle - much like that of the toshidama used by the Utagawa school artists.


There is another copy of this kakemono in the Worcester Art Museum.



1) In a small black and white image in Masterpieces of Japanese Prints: The European Collections - Ukiyo-e from the Victoria and Albert Museum, Kodansha International, 1991, p.17 and again in a larger reproduction in color on page 78. Unlike the copy in the Lyon Collection the one in the V & A is a nishiki-e.

2) In a large, full-page, color reproduction in Japanese Prints by Catherine David, 2010, Éditions Place des Victoires, p. 203.