Narita Morikane, dates unknown
Twenty-Four Figures of Charming Women: Lamp
(Adesugata Nijushiko: Ranpu)
a beauty kneels before a small table as she reaches up to a lamp with a fringed shade, a small tray of toiletries in the lower left corner is embellished with bright silver mica; the series title at the upper right, Adesugata Nijushiko; signed below, Morikane, with artist's seal Morikane, publisher's mark Yamase and seal at lower left corner, Hanken shoyu fukyo fukusei, Shinbisha (copyright ownership, reproduction not allowed, Shinbisha), ca. 1931
dai oban tate-e 16 7/8 by 11 1/4 in., 43 by 28.5 cm
The biographical details of Narita Morikane are unknown. This collaborative series, with designs by Morikane and Ohira Kasen (1900-1983), may never have been completed. The innocuous title, Twenty-four Figures of Charming Women, refers to the classical Confucian theme, Twenty-four Paragons of Filial Piety (Nijushiko), but belies this series of rather risqué designs. This beauty, with her moga ('modern girl') hairstyle, is particularly suggestive, the cloth draped over her shoulders falls open to reveal her breasts; and her red under-garment barely covers the area below her waist. As all twenty-four designs have not been recorded (yet), it is possible that the publisher, Shinbisha, was forced to stop production due to pressure from the government which was becoming more nationalistic and conservative in the 1930s.
Reigle Newland, Amy, and Hamanaka Shinji, The Female Image: 20th century prints of Japanese beauties, 2000, no. 204
Scholten Japanese Art is open Monday - Friday, and some Saturdays by appointment only
Contact Katherine Martin at
(212) 585-0474 or email
to schedule a visit between 11am and 4pm preferably for no more than two individuals at a time.
Visitors are asked to wear face masks and practice social distancing at their discretion.
site last updated
October 21, 2021
Scholten Japanese Art
145 West 58th Street, suite 6D
New York, New York 10019
ph: (212) 585-0474
fx: (212) 585-0475
Join our mailing list...