Kuniyoshi Woman with Drink


Woman sitting at a table, drinking, with a cigarette in her hand.

Yasuo Kuniyoshi
b. 1889 Okayama, Japan; d. 1953 New York, NY
Woman with Drink, about 1937
Tempera on paper
11 1/2 x 9 1/4 in
Accession date: 1989
The Dr. and Mrs. John J. Mayers Collection
© Estate of Yasuo Kuniyoshi/Licensed by ARS, New York, NY


Visual Arts

Grade Range



Critical analysis


Museum trip


Personal Connection worksheet

About the Artist

American, born in Okayama, Japan (1894-1953)

Learning Goal

To use critical analysis to describe the characteristics of the portrait Woman with Drink by Yasuo Kuniyoshi.

I Can Statement

I can use critical analysis to describe the characteristics of the portrait Woman with Drink by Yasuo Kuniyoshi.


Critical analysis, realistic, abstract, texture, portrait


  • Define and discuss critical analysis.
  • Introduce or review the vocabulary.
  • Point out that the artist was born in Okayama, Japan.
  • Elicit information about Japan from the class (location, climate, capital city, language).
  • What is this type of image called (portrait)?
  • Ask where they have seen portraits before (at home, at school, at a museum).
  • Explain and discuss the definition of abstract and realistic art.
  • Ask whether the portrait looks more realistic or more abstract. 
  • Discuss the pose, background, accessories and the sitter’s expression. 
  • Invite the group to describe the mood that the subject evokes in them (serious, happy sad).
  • Have the children describe the colors (dark, light or earth tones). 
  • Ask if the colors affect their mood (happy, calm or not at all).
  • Ask the group what the artist’s mood might have been when he created the piece.
  • Have the children use an adjective to describe the texture (smooth, bumpy, thick or thin).
  • Ask the children to identify the shapes (circles, rectangles, triangles).
  • Elicit a description of the lines (straight, curvy, diagonal).
  • Discuss with the class reasons for having a portrait created.
  • What can you infer about the sitter from her portrait?


Elicit critiques (I liked or disliked the portrait because …); record the responses.


List some famous people who have had their portraits created.

Florida Standards

Florida Visual Arts Standards Grades K-5

  • Vocabulary: VA.1.C.3.1 / VA.2.C.3.1 / VA.3.C.3.1 / VA.4.C.3.1 / VA.1.S.1.4/ VA.2.S.1.4 / VA.3.S.1.4 / VA.4.S.1.4 / VA.5.S.1.4
  • Interpret and Reflect: VA.K.C.1 .2 / VA.1.C.1.2 / VA.2.C.1.2 / VA.3.C.1.2 / VA.4.C.1.2 / VA.5.C.1.2
  • Artist’s intent: VA.5.C.3.2
  • Critique art: VA.3.C.3.3 / VA.4.C.3.3 / VA.5.C.3.3
  • Identify shapes: MAFS.K.G.1.2 / MAFS.4.G.1.2 / MAFS.5.G.2.4

Florida Visual Arts Standards Grades 6-8

  • Vocabulary: VA.68.C.3.1 
  • Interpret and Reflect: VA.68.C.1.2
  • Artist’s intent: VA.68.S.1.5
  • Describe art from selected cultures: VA.68.H.1.1
  • Critique art: VA.68.C.3.3

Florida Visual Arts Standards Grades 9-12

  • Interpret and Reflect: VA.912.C.1
  • Vocabulary: VA.912.C.3.1
  • Describe art from selected cultures: VA.912.H.1
  • Critique art: VA.912.C.3
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