Utagawa Hiroshige (1797-1858) was one of the last great artists in the Japanese ukiyo-e tradition . The word literally means "paintings of the floating world" and designates an artistic genre that flourished between the 17th and 19th centuries and symbolized the image of Japan in the Western world. Hedonistic in many respects, ukiyo-e scenes often depicted the bright light and attractions of Edo: beautiful women, actors and sumo wrestlers, urban life, and spectacular scenery.
Despite covering a wide variety of subjects, Hiroshige became famous above all for his landscapes . In fact, his masterpiece was a series of prints known as One Hundred Famous Views of Edo (1856-1858), which reproduces various scenes of the city through the seasons, from bustling shopping streets to splendid cherry orchards.
This reprint is made up of one of the best complete series of original woodblock prints from the Ota Memorial Museum of Art in Tokyo . Each of the 120 illustrations is accompanied by a description that allows readers to immerse themselves in these beautiful and vibrant views that became paradigms of Japonisme and inspired Impressionist, Post-Impressionist and Art Nouveau artists alike, from Vincent van Gogh to James McNeil Whistler.