Kitagawa Utamaro (1753-1806) was a Japanese painter, one of the masters of Ukiyo-e.
His work became known in the West in the nineteenth century, finding a great success. He particularly influenced the Impressionists with the composition style of his prints.
He was dubbed "the painter of green houses" (brothels) in 1891 by Edmond de Goncourt , although only a third of the numerous Utamaro's prints that we know were actually devoted to Yoshiwara. (Yoshiwara was a famous district of Edo, now Tokyo, Japan. It was known as "the pleasure district", famous for its artists, courtesans and prostitutes.