Size: 8 3/8 x 10 1/2 in. (214 x 270 mm.)
Item#: APPW-162 Artist: Toyo Okamoto
Image or title: oiran (courtesan prostitute) on parade, rear view.
Date: 1930s. Medium: gelatin silver print. Price: ¥95,000 JPY

Description: parading of an oiran (courtesan prostitute) by the prominent Japanese photographer Toyo Okamoto. This image shows a specially fashioned kimono that is both ornate and very expensive. Print is not signed but has Okamoto's trademark blind stamp of a weeping cherry tree design in the lower right corner (below). This same blind stamp can be found in his various publications. Vintage glossy print in excellent condition.

Toyo Okamoto: born: 1891, died: n.d.

Born Okamoto Sadataro, he began his career as an amateur photographer in 1918. By 1927 Okamoto had turned professional and opened a photography firm called Toyo Shashin Kenkyu Kai. This was located in Kyoto. He was known to photograph animals and nature, as well landscapes, customs, and tourist views. In 1930 he published his first book Kacho Shashin Zukon by Heibonsha, followed by Bijutsu Shashin Taisei in 1937 also by Heibonsha. Then in 1938-1940 he published Toyo Kacho Shashin Shu by Geichiku-do. It is now known why the publishing date of his last book was listed as three years, perhaps this was due to various editions.