Abalone Divers - Kitagawa Utamaro - Ukiyo-e Woodblock Print Art Painting - Art Prints
Utamaro depicts a group of nude ama divers finishing a day of diving for haliotis abalone sea snails. He draws them naturalistically, without elongation or other distortions that ukiyo-e artists typically employed to present ideal models of beauty. They are tall with white skin and long, stringy black hair that is wet and dangles from them. They appear soft-skinned and the contours of their exposed upper bodies have reddish outlines, emphasizing their strong, corporeal figures at physical labour. The scenery is made up of light greens and other pale colours, which contrast with the red clothes several of the figures wear.
Utamaro experimented with line, colour, and printing techniques to bring out subtle differences in the features, expressions, and backdrops of subjects from a wide variety of class and background.
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