UTAMARO Gosseku Festival


Choyu – Gosseku Festival

Japanese Print Description

UTAMARO  (1754-1806)

Choyo – Gosseku (5th) Festival
Signed:  Utamaro hitsu
Series:  Mutual Love at the 5 Festivals
Publisher:  Wakasaya Yoichi
C 1790s

Utamaro specialized in bijin-ga, portraying a variety of women, not just the women of the pleasure quarters.  In the 1790s he was at the forefront of experiments with cropped images such as these half-length portraits which provided a greater sense of intimacy with his subjects.  Here a woman with a protective cloth hair covering over her elaborate hair-do rolls dumplings between her hands and a young man holds a bamboo vase containing grasses and chrysanthemums.  The Gosseku Festival takes place on the 9th day of the 9th month, chrysanthemum season.  It is one of the “Five Great Festivals”.

Exhibited Gardener Museum of Ceramics, Toronto, 1999


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