This site requires that you enable Javascript to function properly Scholten Japanese Art | Utagawa School | Modern Collection of Colors | Highlights of Japanese Printmaking Part 4 Shunga
Scholten Japanese Art Gallery
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Kikugawa Eizan

Utagawa School, mid-19th century

Modern Collection of Colors
(Tosei Iro Zukushi)

fukuro-toji kohon with shikake-e (trick picture); with plain white cover inscribed in ink, Tosei iro zukushi (Modern Collection of Colors), the double-page spread frontispiece with the title repeated in metallic printing, and again on the title page; with a two-page introduction signed Keisui tei (probably the publisher), followed by eight single-page illustrations and two double-page illustrations; each with a cartouche with a title corresponding to a color: yamabuki iro (bright yellow), momo iro (peach-colored), murasaki (purple), mizu (water-colored, light blue), fuji iro (wisteria-colored, light purple), toki iro (orange-pink), chai iro (tea-colored), kon (dark blue), tamago iro (egg-colored), moegi iro (green onion-colored), followed by fourteen pages of text, ca. mid-19th century

kohon 7 1/8 by 4 5/8 in., 18 by 11.6 cm

Although Utagawa Toyokuni (1769-1825) and his followers dominated in figural ukiyo-e for most of the 19th century, Utagawa school artists for the most part stayed out of the shunga market from 1804 following a crack-down by the authorities. Shortly after the death of Toyokuni, his leading student, Utagawa Kunisada (Toyokuni III, 1786-1865) began producing erotic illustrated books.

Clark et al., Shunga: Sex and Pleasure in Japanese Art, 2013, p 301, fig. 1 (similar trick picture)
Uhlenbeck and Winkel, Japanese Erotic Fantasies, 2005, p. 212, no. 85 (similar trick picture)