Utagawa Hiroshige, 1797-1858
One Hundred Famous Views of Edo: Sudden Shower at Atake (Ohashi Bridge)
(Meisho Edo hyakkei: Meisho Edo Hyakkei: Ohashi Atake no yudachi)
signed Hiroshige ga with publisher's seal Uo-Ei (Sakanaya Eikichi), censor's seal Aratame, and date seal of 1857 (9th month, year of the snake)
oban tate-e 14 3/4 by 10 in., 37.5 by 25.5 cm
Commonly known as Ohashi Bridge, this moody, dramatic and dynamic image is one of the most renowned designs by Hiroshige, if not one of the most recognized images in the entire field of ukiyo-e. Only thirty years after it was published, an impression made its way into the hands of Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1890), who copied it in oils in 1888.
A synopsis of differing theories regarding the sequence of production of the variant states and impressions of this print is presented in Hiroshige: Shaping the Image of Japan (Uhlenbeck & Jansen, 2008, pp. 98-99), with the arguable premise that the most elaborate ('deluxe') editions are usually the earliest. The entry is accompanied by illustrations of various impressions including one from the collection of the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam (56-753) which is very similar to this print (pl. 118-b).
This example, with particularly full margins, is a relatively early impression, most likely issued before the series was completed and re-issued with changes to the shading and coloring, such as on the title cartouche and the bokashi on the bridge and in the water.
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site last updated
February 21, 2020
Scholten Japanese Art
145 West 58th Street, suite 6D
New York, New York 10019
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