Picture of a Mercantile Establishment in Yokohama

Artist: Utagawa Sadahide 歌川貞秀 (1807-1873)
Historical period(s)
Edo period, 1861
Ink and color on paper
H x W: 36.5 x 75.3 cm (14 3/8 x 29 5/8 in)
Japan, Yokohama
Credit Line
Gift of the Daval Foundation, from the Collection of Ambassador and Mrs. William Leonhart
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Woodblock print

commerce, Edo period (1615 - 1868), foreigner, Japan, shamisen, triptych, ukiyo-e
Provenance research underway.

The prominent stripes of an American flag in the upper left corner, echoed in the blue-and-white pattern of a courtesan's robe at the far right, identify this mercantile firm as American. In the center is a geisha, a professional entertainer, who plays a shamisen, a three-stringed Japanese instrument. An American woman holds an instrument of the violin or viol family, playing it as if it were a shamisen, with a shamisen plectrum.

Published References
  • Ann Yonemura. Beyond the Brush: Japanese Prints, Paper Works and Photographs. vol. XLIII no. 3. p. 33, fig. 4.
  • Ann Yonemura, Milo Cleveland Beach, The Honorable and Mrs. William Leonhart. Yokohama: Prints From 19th Century Japan. Exh. cat. Washington. cat. 53, pp. 140-141.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Whistler's Neighborhood
Google Cultural Institute
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