“Utagawa Hiroshige ～Landscapes along the Tōkaidō Road and Mt. Fuji”
2016, April 29th～June 26th
【1st Term】 April 29th ～May 26th
【2nd Term】 June 1st～26th
(Works change between two terms)
(will be closed on May 2, 9, 16, 23, 27～31st / June 6, 13, 20th)
Breakthrough Series Titled “Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō Road” and Series Titled “Thirty-six Views of Mt.Fuji” in His Later Years- Release of Two Series of Masterpieces by Hiroshige
Utagawa Hiroshige (1797-1858) was one of the leading ukiyo-e artists of the late Edo period, specializing in fūkeiga (landscape pictures). In the 1830s, budding artist Utagawa released his breakthrough series, “Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō”, immediately gaining public attention. This was around the same time Hokusai’s “Thirty-six Views of Mt. Fuji” gained popularity and fukeiga was becoming a trend. Hiroshige’s piece became a big hit and he instantly became a well-known ukiyo-e artist. For the rest of his life, Hiroshige continued to depict Japan’s beautiful sceneries and landscapes in his art. In his later years, he released yet another masterpiece series titled “Thirty-six Views of Mt. Fuji”, a deliberate reference to rival artist Hokusai’s earlier series with the same translated title. This exhibition features the two landmark series mentioned above that highlight Hiroshige‘s ukiyo-e career, as well as his other Tōkaidō-themed works and the series “One Hundred Famous Views of Edo“.
Hiroshige’s breakthrough: Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō
Hiroshige’s masterpiece, titled “Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō” (Hōeidō edition), is thought to have been created around 1833. Around this time, landscape ukiyo-e woodblock prints increased in popularity, owing to the fame of “Thirty-six Views of Mt.Fuji” by Hokusai. Still a rising artist, Hiroshige released the much anticipated “Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō” following his “Famous Views of the Eastern Capital”, which was created at the beginning of Tempō era (1830～44). “Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō” became very popular and has remained popular to this day. The exhibition features the complete works of this series, as well as alternate versions of the images.
Series of “Thirty-six Views of Mt. Fuji” by Hiroshige in his later years
After the huge success of the series “Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō Road,” Hiroshige continued to create many works as one of the leading artists of landscape pictures. “Thirty-six Views of Mt. Fuji” is his masterpiece in his later years. According to the index inscribed onto the works, Hiroshige created rough sketches of this series in 1858 and published it in the following year. Although the theme of this series is the same as of rivaling artist, Hokusai’s “Thirty-six Views of Mt.Fuji”, the Hiroshige’s calm depiction of Mt. Fuji marks a distinction from Hokusai’s style.
During the same period as this exhibition, “The Hara Yasusaburo Collection- HIRISHIGE VIVID” will be held at the Suntory Museum of Art starting April 29th. This exhibition will focus on two series of famous pictures by Hiroshige, “One Hundred Famous Views of Edo” and “Famous Views in the Six-odd Provinces”. By visiting both museums, people can enjoy the four celebrated series of Hiroshige art all in one period: “Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō Road”, “Famous Views in the Six-odd Provinces”, “One Hundred Views of Edo”, and “Thirty-six Views of Mt.Fuji”. We offer a mutual discount of the entrance fees for both museums: you are welcome to enjoy a whole collection of Hiroshige at the Ōta Memorial Museum of Art and the Suntory Museum of Art, both located along the Chiyoda subway line.
＜Highlight Work of Exhibition＞
①Utagawa Hiroshige “Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō Road: Nihonbashi in the Morning” (Exhibited in the 1st term)
Picture ① depicts the scenery of Nihonbashi, the starting point of the five highways including the Tōkaidō road. As in the title of the picture “Nihonbashi in the Morning” this pictures depicts a scene of Sankinkōtai (a mandatory request for the daimyō to see the shogunate in Edo) crossing Nihonbashi in the early morning. On the right-hand of picture are two puppies depicted in the shadow of the gate. Behind the gates are the place where criminals faced public humiliation. The left side of the picture shows the fish sellers making space for the Sankinkotai to pass. The board indicates a message from the Tokugawa shogunate.
②Utagawa Hiroshige “ Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō Road: Nihonbashi “ (Suntory Museum pf Art/Exhibited in the 1st term)
Let’s look at the picture ②. Though this picture looks similar to picture ①, the title is different. This picture is the so-called kawari-zu which is usually picture that is slightly different from the original picture. Like in picture ①, the row of daimyōs can be seen in the back. Yet, those depicted in the front are greater in number. Flower sellers, young Buddhist disciples, and troups dancing the Sumiyoshi Odori can be seen. In the middle is the brown dog around the wooden door from picture ①.
“Fifty-three Stations of the Tokaido Road” is thought to have been long-seller, and multiple similar drawings with minute differences, called kotoban, exist. Among those, this is an interesting picture where big design changes have been made.
|University and High school students||500yen|
|Junior High School Students and below||Free|
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