Suzuki Harunobu: Prints in Full Color
Courtesan and Hotei Smoking on a Veranda in Moonlight
20 x 27 cm
Collection of Harlow N. Higinbotham
This delightful design shows a courtesan smoking on a moonlit veranda with Hotei (Chinese: Budai), an obscure Chinese monk who was popularly regarded as a manifestation of the Buddha of the Future and as one of the Seven Gods of Good Fortune in Japanese folklore. Chrysanthemums indicate that it is autumn. The orange mineral pigment tan, now slightly oxidized, and the styles of the drawing and signature point to a date in the late 1760s. This image came to light only in 2004, having formerly belonged to the famous Belgian collector Adolphe Stoclet (1871–1949).
Photo: Robert Lifson