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Japanese Art

Japanese Art

Sebastian Izzard LLC

17 East 76th Street, 3rd Floor
New York, NY 10021

Tel: 212 794 1522

By appointment only

Important Japanese Prints and Paintings of the Late Eighteenth Century

Japanese prints and paintings of the last years of the eighteenth century are the focus of the fall exhibition at Sebastian Izzard LLC Asian Art. This was the decade of the ōkubi-—defined as head and shoulder portraits—of both men and women, usually actors or courtesans and famous beauties of the day. Although not part of the Asian pictorial tradition, portrait heads of actors began to make their appearance on fan prints, and on fan-shaped cartouches on larger prints, from the 1720s onwards. It was not until around 1770 that the format was popularized. From around 1775 Katsukawa Shunshō (1726–1792) made large prints of actors that were designed to be cut out and mounted as folding fans and in the early 1780s, he made aiban-size, half-length portraits. His student Katsukawa Shunkō (1743‒1812) then followed up with his major contribution to ukiyo-e, the first full-size ōban tate-e ōkubi-e.

The exhibition will also include rare prints by Kitagawa Utamaro (1754‒1806), Katsukawa Shun’ei (1762‒1819), Chōkōsai Eishō (act. ca. 1780‒1800), Utagawa Kunimasa (1773‒1810), Tōshūsai Sharaku (act. 1794‒95), and Utagawa Toyokuni (1769‒1825), as well as a select group of ukiyo-e beauty paintings.