36 Good and Evil Beauties -
Lovely portrait of the shirabyoshi dancer Osame riding in a boat, cradling her hand drum in her lap. She looks down with a slight smile, lost in her thoughts as the boat glides across the water. She wears an elegant green brocade outer robe over a white kimono tucked into red hakama pants, a tall court cap tied under her chin with purple cord. Beautifully detailed with soft shading in the water and deep blue sky and embossing in the white kimono. A charming figure with a sweet, expressive face.
Amy Reigle Newland devoted a whole paragraph on page 18 to the significance of this series, i.e., Zen-aku sanjūroku bijin, at the beginning of her book on Kunichika: "Thirty-six good and evil beauties (Zen-aku sanjūroku bijin)... of 1876 is arguably one of Kunichika's most accomplished forays into bijinga. The quality of printing is superb. His treatment of the subject is fluid, the women portrayed energetic, wild, their poses at times reminiscent of those encountered in the work of earlier artists like Kuniyoshi and Kunisada, and in his own actor prints... Each sheet in Thirty-six good and evil beauties illustrates a famous woman from distant or more recent history with an explanatory cartouche above by a contemporary writer."
Condition: Margins as shown, very good condition, not backed.