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Vincent Van Gogh

Courtesan After Eisen By Van Gogh Framed Print

Courtesan After Eisen By Van Gogh Framed Print

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Completed in 1887, this painting was inspired by a woodcut created by the Japanese artist Kesai Eisen. The print had previously appeared on the front cover of Paris Illustré in 1886. Van Gogh enlarged and copied the Japanese figure using a grid. Using vivid colours and strong lines, he made it look like a woodcut. The woman's hairdo and the belt (obi) she is sporting—which is fastened at the front of her kimono rather than the back—allow us to identify her as a courtesan. Van Gogh framed her in a pond with frogs, cranes, bamboo stems, and water lilies. The French slang terms for "prostitute" are "grue" (crane) and "grenouille" (frog) in this scenario.

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