Our Art / Ohara Koson / Peonies with Butterfly

Peonies with Butterfly by Ohara Koson
Peonies with Butterfly by Ohara Koson

Peonies with Butterfly, 1927

Ohara Koson

This elegant woodblock print shows an enormous peony, known as the “King of Flowers” in Japan, with a white butterfly about to alight on it. In Japanese mythology, butterflies often symbolize a person’s soul. Peonies signal good fortune, bravery and honor, and in tattoo art, represent masculinity and a devil-may-care attitude. The artist was known for meticulously detailed and realistic nature studies like this one.

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