Publisher - Adachi from a rare series of Edo masterwork designs. Adachi publisher seal in margin or on reverse.
Adachi was one of the most respected publishers of the 20th century. Their woodblocks were printed to the highest standards with excellent color and fine detail. Founded in 1925, Adachi also chose interesting and varied subjects for their prints and was the only publisher of many famous old ukiyo-e images.
Beauty Smoking - Classic Utamaro portrait of a young beauty smoking a slender pipe. She exhales a puff of smoke, the swirling vapors rendered only with embossed lines, a fantastic detail emulating Utamaro's original. She wears a blue cotton summer kimono patterned with tie-dyed seashells, the robe hanging open at her chest. Beautifully detailed with a shimmering mica background and fine line work in the hair. A terrific design.
Woodblock reprints - In the 20th century, artists and publishers collaborated to recreate famous woodblock prints for interested Japanese collectors and Westerners looking for rare designs. New blocks were made, and the prints were painstakingly printed by artisan printers in the same method as the 19th century originals - one block for each color. Woodblock reprints were an opportunity to collect and enjoy a famous design at a small fraction of the price of an original. They still are today.
Artist - Utamaro (1750 - 1806)
Image Size - 15 1/4" x 10 1/4" + margins as shown
Condition - This print with excellent color and detail as shown. Please see photos for details. Nice overall.