Hiroshige II Utagawa, Enjoying the Evening Cool at Shijo in Kyoto
Artist: Hiroshige II Utagawa (1826-1869)
Title: Enjoying the Evening Cool at Shijo, Kyoto
Series title: One Hundred Famous Views in the Various Provinces
Publisher: Uoya Eikichi
Size: 36.1 x 24.1 cm
Original Japanese woodblock print.
As with many of Hiroshige II's prints, those comprising the series 'One Hundred Famous Views in the Various Provinces' borrowed compositional elements from his teacher Hiroshige I Utagawa, in this case echoing his 'Famous Views of the Sixty-odd Provinces'. At this point, he had just started using his teacher's name, who had recently passed away, therefore the prints in this series are signed 'Hiroshige'.
In this print, people are enjoying the evening cool on platforms over the dry river bed at Shijo in Kyoto, a famous commercial centre to this day. The summer season in Japan can be extremely hot and humid and night time is welcomed for its breeze. It also becomes an opportunity to eat outside and relax in the company of entertainers.
|Print Format||Oban (Vertical)|
|Artist Name||Hiroshige II Utagawa|
|Title||Enjoying the Evening Cool at Shijo, Kyoto|
|Dimensions||36.1 x 24.1 cm|
|Condition Report||Slightly trimmed, ink spotted on top, pinholes, thin paper on top.|
Hiroshige II Utagawa
Hiroshige II Utagawa was a woodblock print artist best known for continuing the tradition of Hiroshige I Utagawa in producing landscape prints. Born in Edo (today’s Tokyo), many details of his formative years are unknown, except that he became a pupil of Hiroshige I under the name of Shigenobu. Hiroshige II produced a large number of commissioned work in the 1850s in the style of the elder Hiroshige, and often signed his work ‘Ichiryusai mon’ (student of Ichiryusai, another art name of Hiroshige).
It appears that he married Hiroshige’s daughter Otatsu and inherited Hiroshige’s name following his death in 1858. In 1865 he moved from Edo to Yokohama after dissolving his marriage and began using the name Kisai Rissho. During this decade he produced a number of collaborative print series, particularly with Kunisada, who had earlier worked with Hiroshige I.
His works have often been confounded with those of Hiroshige I, which they resemble closely in style, subject, and even signature, particularly in series such as ‘One Hundred Famous Views in the Various Provinces’ (1859-61) that echo his master’s ‘Famous Views of the Sixty-odd Provinces’ (1853-56). ‘One Hundred Famous Views of Edo’ (1856-58), also by his master, was finished by Hiroshige II following the former’s death. Although the signatures are the same, some of the later designs bear stylistic resemblance to those of Hiroshige II. Other notable series include ‘Eight Views of the Sumida River’ (1861) and ‘Thirty-six Views of the Eastern Capital’ (1861-62).