Katsushika Hokusū 葛飾北嵩 (active c. 1800s–1830s)
A Geisha and Her Client in the Osaka Pleasure Quarters (Osaka iromachi no geisha to kyaku)
From the series The Safflower Princess (Suetsumuhana)
Japan, Edo period (1615–1868), c. 1817
Woodblock print; ink and color on paper
Purchase, Richard Lane Collection, 2003

Originally misattributed by shunga scholars to Katsushika Oui (active c. late 19th century, known also as Oei), the third daughter of Hokusai (1760–1849), later research has revealed it to be a work by Hokusū, one of Hokusai’s students.

The print depicts a summer afternoon at the pleasure quarters in Osaka, where a geisha, dressed in a diaphanous robe, tries to appease a wealthy yet unsophisticated client. After trying to comply with his requests and perform various physically uncomfortable acts, she finally loses her temper, exclaiming, “You idiot! What are you thinking?! I said it hurt, didn’t I? Stop wasting my time! Go do this to your wife! Truly, this is bothersome!”

View info on museum database (enabled through support by the Robert F. Lange Foundation)