Hiroshige 広重: The Sea at Tsukuda in Edo 東都佃沖

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Artist: Utagawa Hiroshige 広重 (1797-1858)
Title: The Sea at Tsukuda in Edo 東都佃沖 Toto Tsukuda Oki
Series: Thirty-six Views of Mt Fuji 冨士三十六景 (Fuji sanjûrokkei)
Date: 1858

We see single-masted cargo boats at anchor in the shallow waters of Edo Bay, their triangulating masts and stays echoing the perfect slope of Mount Fuji in the distance. The lower horizon is a deep red, with the upper sky and foreground water a deep blue. A row of storehouses is glimpsed at right, and vessels at sail may be seen in the distance as well. All the details attest to the prosperity of the city and its waterways. Tsukuda Island was a low, sandy islet at the mouth of the Sumida River, the main river artery through Edo. It was a village of both fishermen and boat pilots, as large boats from the sea could anchor and wait to be unloaded into smaller vessels and carried through Edo’s network of waterways. The small boats could beach on the island and wait for the large ships to begin unloading. Many fishermen also lived on the island, and we can see a single fisherman casting a net from his small boat at far left. Plovers are seen flying low across the water, lending a sweep of movement to contrast with the stillness of the resting boats. Hokusai included an aerial view of Tsukuda Island as one of his own Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji.  A beautifully clean and crisp impression in perfect color.

Condition: Excellent impression, color and condition. Mint.
Dimensions: ôban (36.5 x 24 cm)
Publisher: Tsutaya Kichizô
Literature: See the following museum collections:  Honolulu Museum of Art,  Museum of Fine Arts Boston, Minneapolis Institute of Art, British Museum. 

Signature: Hiroshige ga