Geisha stringing a shamisen from the series Thirty-Six Tokyo Restaurants

Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Geisha stringing a shamisen

from the series Thirty-Six Tokyo Restaurants

by Toyohara Kunichika, 1870

IHL Cat. #578

About This Print

Picturing a geisha stringing a shamisen, against a red brocade background, this print is from the series Thirty-Six Tokyo Restaurants which pairs famous geisha with famous Tokyo eateries. In the series, the square panel at top left shows either speciality dishes or views from the eatery. The large yellow cartouche on the right shows the series' title, name of the geisha and the restaurant's address.  The geisha's name and the name of the restaurant are unread. 

In 1878 Kunichika designed another series Thirty-Six Modern Restaurants (Kaika Sanjūroku kaiseki) which also paired restaurants with beautiful women.  Whether the publisher or the artist received compensation for the free advertising given to the restaurants portrayed is unknown nor is it known if Kunichika personally knew the women in the prints.

About The Series

To see other prints in this series go to the print Geisha from the Hiramtasu Restaurant (IHL Cat. #577).

Print Details

 IHL Catalog #577
 Title (Description) Geisha stringing a shamisen
 Series Thirty-Six Tokyo Restaurants (Tōkei sanjūroku kaiseki 東京三十六会席)
 Artist Toyohara Kunichika (1835–1900)
Kunichika hitsu 国周筆
 Seal toshidama seal as shown above
 Publication Date
 aratame date seal November 1870 (Meiji 3)  未十一改
 PublisherYorozuya Magobei 万屋 孫兵衛
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition good - backed with thin paper; some color loss along vertical fold on right edge; irregular trimming of right and top margins; minor soiling
 Genre ukiyo-e; bijin-ga
 Format vertical oban
 H x W Paper 14 x 9 7/8 in. (35.6 x 25.1 cm)
 Collections This Print