Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

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The Courtesan Morokoshi of Echizen-ya

Glossary (3)

gauffrage, nishiki-e, vegetable pigments

  • gauffrage

    Decorative embossing technique. In Japanese prints, it is also sometimes called 'blind printing'.

  • nishiki-e

    Nishiki-e literally means 'brocade pictures' and refers to multi-coloured woodblock prints.

  • vegetable pigments

    Vegetable pigments were used to create coloured dyes for Japanese prints, paintings, and textiles. These pigments often faded over time due to the chemical reactions they underwent.


    • currently in research collection

Objects are sometimes moved to a different location. Our object location data is usually updated on a monthly basis. Contact the Jameel Study Centre if you are planning to visit the museum to see a particular object on display, or would like to arrange an appointment to see an object in our reserve collections.


Publications online

  • Beauties of the Four Seasons by Mitsuko Watanabe

    Beauties of the Four Seasons

    This series is very loosely based on the six greatest poets of the ninth century. The courtesan Morokoshi was enrolled in the Echizen-ya between 1791 and 1799, and she was sometimes depicted by Eishi and Utamaro even though she was not of the highest rank of the courtesan. Morokoshi was famous as a poet and in this print she is holding a writing brush, thoughtfully contemplating her poem. She is wearing a black summer kimono with green pine tree design. Her obi shows a white decorative design using gauffrage and her collar has an applied coating of mica on the yellow ground. The label of the series and title is on the top of the left side and includes a red lily.

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