Kitagawa Utamaro (Japanese, 1754-1806)
Sheet - h:38.20 w:25.40 cm (h:15 w:10 inches)
Bequest of Edward L. Whittemore
By mid-nineteenth century, Japanese prints were avidly collected in Paris by many artists, including Cassatt and Degas. The brilliant colors, contrasting decorative patterns, and elimination of perspective that were typical of ukiyo-e-popular genre woodblock prints-were liberating to the avant-garde Impressionists who emulated the Japanese style in their own work. Cassatt was enraptured by a monumental exhibition of 725 Japanese prints held at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris in 1890. In a letter to her friend, the artist Berthe Morisot, she confessed to dreaming about making her own color prints. Within months she embarked on a suite of prints she described as making in "imitation of the Japanese print."
Signature: Utamaro hitsu
Publisher: Omiya Gonkuro (Omiya, emblem)