attributed to Keisai Eisen Double Portrait of Two Beauties

attributed to Keisai Eisen, 1790 - 1848

Preparatory Drawing of Double Portrait of Two Beauties

sumi ink on paper, unsigned, with notations regarding colors, ca. 1930

8 1/4 by 10 7/8 in., 20.8 by 27.5 cm

Eisen included okubi-e ('big head' close up portraits) similar to these as frontispieces in his erotic books. His 1824 shunga book, Enpon fuji no yuki (An erotic Picture Book of Snow on Fuji) opens with a sequence of seven such portraits of 'Rejected Geisha.' A similar frontispiece from the William Green Collection at the Mead Art Museum from Ehon mime kurabe (A charming book: A competition of Beautiful Girls) illustrates 'The Expression of Usuyuki, Skillful at Sexual Congress.' This drawing seems to be in a preliminary stage with notations regarding the color on only a few details on the left-hand figure.

Metropolitan Museum of Art, accession no.2013.676
Mead Art Museum, accession no. AC2005.663
(inv. no. 10-2696)


attributed to Keisai Eisen
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

attributed to Keisai Eisen
Mead Art Museum, Amherst College


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site last updated
October 18, 2019

Scholten Japanese Art
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New York, New York 10019
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