Isoda Koryûsai (active mid-1760s-1780s)
'Beauty Dreaming of Good Luck'
Nishiki-e (brocade print), hashira-e (pillar print)
Hashira-e size Early
Museum no. E.3757-1953
Koryûsai was the principal follower of Suzuki Harunobu, an ukiyo-e artist who dominated the genre in the Meiwa era (1764-72). Koryûsai excelled particularly in prints in the format of hashira-e, or 'pillar print'. These were designed, as the name implies, for hanging on the interior pillars of Japanese rooms.
This print depicts a superstition widely believed during the Edo period. A beautiful woman is shown slumbering against a background featuring an eggplant below a hawk soaring in front of Mount Fuji. People believed that good luck would follow if a hawk, an eggplant and Mount Fuji appeared in the first dream of the New Year.
This print can be found in Prints and Drawings Study Room box TOPIC JP2.