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A Beauty

A Beauty

美人図

early 1800s

Gion Seitoku 祇園 井特

(Japanese, active late 1700s–early 1800s)

Hanging scroll; ink and color on paper

Overall: 139.7 x 55.8 cm (55 x 21 15/16 in.); Painting only: 56.3 x 43.1 cm (22 3/16 x 16 15/16 in.)

The Kelvin Smith Collection, given by Mrs. Kelvin Smith 1985.271

Location

Did you know?

The person's lipstick is made from safflower.

Description

A Kyoto-based ukiyo-e painter, Gion Seitoku specialized in portraying women from Gion and Shimabara, licensed brothel districts in that city. He was known for detailing faces with subtle modeling to heighten a sense of realism. During the 1700s and 1800s, wearing iridescent, greenish lip gloss made from safflower was in vogue. In addition, Japanese women almost universally practiced the custom of artificially blackening their teeth with a stain.

See also

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