The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

"The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara (Seiro Juni-toki)" by Kitagawa Utamaro (1753?-1806) was published around 1794 by the publisher Tsutaya. It is a 12-part series showing a day in Shin-Yoshiwara by taking a "snapshot" once every two hours or once every "koku" according to the old way of telling time in Japan, in which a total of 12 koku corresponded to each 24-hour day. "Green Houses (Seiro)" refer to establishments in the famous red-light district. Against a background of solid yellow and gold leaf powder, the courtesans of Shin-Yoshiwara are portrayed in full length as slender, 10-head figures.

Known as the master of bijinga (pictures of beautiful women), Utamaro gained prominence by capturing the women's inner beauty as well as their attractive appearances. By following a day in the life of the women in Shin-Yoshiwara, he was able to capture the enchanting atmosphere of the district and give a glimpse of the true face of the women working there. The series is highly regarded as the only Utamaro work depicting the real life of courtesans.

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The Hour of the Tiger(4am)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Tiger(4am)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Sheep(2pm)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Sheep(2pm)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Hare(6am)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Hare(6am)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Horse(noon)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Horse(noon)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

A set of "The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara"

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

A set of "The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara"

195,000yen (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Dragon(8am)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Dragon(8am)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Wild Boar(10pm)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Wild Boar(10pm)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Ox (2am)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Ox (2am)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Dog(8pm)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Dog(8pm)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Snake(10am)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Snake(10am)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Rat (midnight)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Rat (midnight)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Cock(6pm)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Cock(6pm)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)

The Hour of the Monkey (4pm)

Kitagawa Utamaro The Twelve Hours in the Yoshiwara

The Hour of the Monkey (4pm)

20,000yen~ (Excluding Tax)