Art/ Collection/ Art Object

A Beauty Looking Down upon a Young Man Reading a Love Letter

Artist:
Utagawa Toyoharu (Japanese, 1735–1814)
Period:
Edo period (1615–1868)
Date:
ca. 1771
Culture:
Japan
Medium:
Polychrome woodblock print (pillar print); ink and color on paper
Dimensions:
26 1/4 x 4 1/4 in. (66.7 x 10.8 cm)
Classification:
Prints
Credit Line:
The Francis Lathrop Collection, Purchase, Frederick C. Hewitt Fund, 1911
Accession Number:
JP675
Not on view
Toyoharu is known for incorporating Western perspective into his prints (uki-e), as may be observed here in the depiction of the sea in the distance. His graceful, willowy images of women remind us of the delicate beauties of Suzuki Harunobu (1725–1770).

The halberd that the woman holds and the shape of the window behind the couple are Chinese and may suggest a parody (mitate) of a Chinese subject.
Signature: Toyoharu ga
Francis Lathrop , Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey (until d. 1909).; Estate of Francis Lathrop , New York (1911; sold to MMA).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Tribute to a Dedicated Collector: Mary Griggs Burke," June 30, 2004–November 29, 2004.

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