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Eizan (1787 - 1867)

Abandonment After Sake, Woman of Mercantile House

Series: Selections from the Brocade Quarter (Eawase Kingai-sho)
Medium: Woodblock Print
Date: c. 1815
Size (H x W): 10.25 x 15 (inches)
Provenance: Kronhausen Collection
Signature: Most shunga were unsigned, therefore the artist is attributed.
Condition: Very good color, impression and state, very light vertical fold, light soiling, small tape on reverse.



Shunga were usually part of albums and light center folds are the norm. It is also common to have light soiling around the edges due to use.

This work depicts a woman of a successful mercantile household entertaining her lover. Man comments "It feels like an octopus sticking to my hand, such a high quality vagina. She comments "Feels so good, like eating all the treats (sweets) at one time. No words to explain it. So satisfied again. My forty-four bones are melting."

About the artist

A native of Edo, Eizan Kikukawa was born as Toshinobu Omiya in 1787. He began his artistic career studying with his father Eiji Kikukawa, a Kano painter and fan maker, before pursuing printmaking under Hokkei, a pupil of Hokusai. From the start of the 19th century to his retirement, Eizan was leading artist of bijin-ga (pictures of beautiful women) and shunga (erotic prints). He is considered the founder of the Kikukawa style. After 1830, he worked almost exclusively as a painter until his death in 1867.


Eizan admired and followed in the footsteps of Utamaro, despite the fact that he never trained with him. Working primarily in the genre of bijin-ga, Eizan captures beautiful women with sensibility and lyricism, imbuing them with an elegance and graceful classicality. Though the increased demand for ukiyo-e during the early 19th century caused some artists to rush their designs, Eizan Kikukawa resisted this pressure, maintaining impeccable design skills throughout his career.