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Three Comic Shunga Masterpieces by Kawanabe Kyosai

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The artist who almost single-handedly maintained the great ‘laughter picture’ (warai-e) tradition during the Meiji era was Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889). The three paintings below, he produced during a painting party (shogakai) somewhere between 1871 and 1889, are excellent examples of his vital continuation. Droll Scenes Fluttering lines seem to dance across the paper as they form three […]

Sensual Sex in the Imperial Court by Kawanabe Kyosai

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Today we briefly put the spotlight on an eye-catching design by the Meiji master Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889). The print comes from his series ‘Byobu isso no uchi (A Pair of Screens)’ that consists of twelve tanzaku-e sized (7 1/8″ x 3 1/3″) prints. Each sheet is accompanied by another (so twenty-four in total), pasted to […]

Exorcism Of The Humorous Series Hana Goyomi by Kawanabe Kyosai

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‘A man throwing beans at a demon that has appeared during sex. In the Edo period, a bean-scattering ceremony was performed in the 12th month.’ From the series ‘Hana-goyomi (Flower Calendar)’, c.1864, Twelfth month. Designed by Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889) Click HERE for the design of the First Month! In the following video you can watch […]

Promiscuous Sex Of The Humorous Series Hana Goyomi by Kawanabe Kyosai

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‘Men and women engaging in promiscuous sex in the crowd of the Tori-no-ichi Fair, held at Otori Shrines on each day of the rooster in the eleventh month.’ From the series ‘Hana-goyomi (Flower Calendar)’, c.1864, Eleventh month. Designed by Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889) Click HERE for the design of the Twelfth Month!

Ebisu Of The Humorous Series Hana Goyomi by Kawanabe Kyosai

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‘Ebisu, a Lucky God, on the night of Ebisu-ko (the Ebisu Festival), sneaking out of a hanging scroll to peep at a sleeping woman.’ From the series ‘Hana-goyomi (Flower Calendar)’, c.1864, Tenth month. Designed by Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889) Click HERE for the design of the Eleventh Month !

Giant Mushroom Of The Humorous Series Hana Goyomi by Kawanabe Kyosai

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‘A man startling a mother and child gathering matsutake mushrooms with his enormous penis disguised as a tree trunk.’ From the series ‘Hana-goyomi (Flower Calendar)’, c.1864, Ninth month. Designed by Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889) Click HERE for the design of the Tenth Month!

Full Moon Of The Humorous Series Hana Goyomi by Kawanabe Kyosai

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‘A courtly couple admiring the full moon from a balcony.’ From the series ‘Hana-goyomi (Flower Calendar)’, c.1864, Eighth month. Designed by Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889) Click HERE for the design of the Ninth Month!  

Tanabata Of The Humorous Series Hana Goyomi by Kawanabe Kyosai

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‘A couple making love while writing their wishes for Tanabata (the Star Festival) on slips of paper to hang from bamboo grass.’ From the series ‘Hana-goyomi (Flower Calendar)’, c.1864, Seventh month. Designed by Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889) Click HERE for the design of the eighth month!

Straw Snake From The Humorous Series Hana Goyomi By Kawanabe Kyosai

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‘A couple surprised by a large snake-shaped object.’ Straw snakes were sold during pigrimages to Mt. Fuji and more commonly to Fujizuka – the “Fuji mounds”built at many locations within the city of Edo substituting for the real mountain.’ From the series ‘Hana-goyomi (Flower Calendar)’, c.1864, Sixth month. Designed by Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889) Click HERE for the […]

Dancing Couple From The Humorous Series Hana Goyomi by Kawanabe Kyosai

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‘A man and woman singing to a shamisen and dancing. The child seems to be up to some mischief.’ From the series ‘Hana-goyomi (Flower Calendar)’, c.1864, Fourth month. Designed by Kawanabe Kyosai (1831-1889) Click HERE for the design of the fifth month!

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