SHUNSHŌ  (1726-1792). A female diver. (Sold)

SHUNSHŌ (1726-1792). A female diver. (Sold)

Artist: Katsukawa Shunshō (1726–1792)
Subject: A female diver (ama), climbing onto a rock from the sea holding an abalone shell (awabi), is attacked by a giant octopus, one tentacles has encircled her right leg. The eyes and tentacles of the octopus are highlighted with mica.
Description: The subject has always had an erotic connotation, both for the nudity depicted and for the reputation of the awabi fisher-girls as strong and free women. This is the only known print with this subject by Shunshō. Before him awabi divers have been represented by Torii Kiyohiro and Suzuki Harunobu. Later Utamaro designed several famous triptychs and Hokusai created probably the most famous and most explicit version of the subject in the third volume of the shunga book Kinoe no Komatsu published in 1814.
Signature: Shunshō ga
Date: ca. 1774
Size: Chūban tate-e, 26,4x19,3 cm.
Medium: Woodblock color print with mica.
Literature: A rare print, the only other impression known is a damaged example from the Vever Collection and now in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 
illustrated in Jack Hillier. Japanese Prints and Drawings from the Vever Collection. 3 voll.. London: Rizzoli International Sotheby Parke Bernet, 1976, vol. I, p. 251, no. 274.
Remarks: This example is illustrated in our catalog "Japanese Prints 1770-1810. New Acquisitions June 2023", no. 1.
Conditions: Fine impression, very good color, in very good conditions.
Status: Sold