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Nihonbashi from the series One Hundred Views of New Tokyo

Japanese Color Woodblock Print 


from the series One Hundred Views of New Tokyo

by Hiratsuka Un'ichi, 1929

Peacock with Plum Blossoms

IHL Cat. #392

About This Print

This print published in 1929 as part of the series Shin Tokyo Hyakkei (One Hundred Views of New Tokyo) is likely a first edition, although the artist's seal and the position of the print's title (verso on the margin) differ from the print in the Carnegie Museum of Art.  (See image below.)

Source: "Shin Tokyo Hyakkei: The Eastern Capital Revisited by the Modern Print Artists," James B. Austin, appearing in Ukiyo-e Art A Journal of the Japan Ukiyo-e Society, No. 14, 1966.
Hiratsuka was asked to make the first print [of the Shin Tokyo Hyakkei series] which was to be, as one might expect, Nihonbashi, for centuries the central point of the city from which all distances were measured.

52. NIHONBASHI (H; 240x180; 0.12) – A fairly representational rendering of this famous bridge, which was for hundreds of years the hub of the city – and even Japan.  Red tower and wharf, right; boats, left; many reflections on the water.  The bridge is now smothered by a freeway.  The print has a black border, the only Hiratsuka print in this series to have one.  Sealed with character “Un” reserved on brown, upper left corner, April 25, 1929.
Hiratsuka Un'ichi
Number 52 from the series One Hundred Views of New Tokyo (Shin Tôkyô hyakkei)
edition 31/50
H: 8 x W: 10 1/2 inches (H: 20 x W: 27 cm)
Bequest of Dr. James B. Austin
Carnegie Museum of Art

The Series One Hundred Views of New Tokyo (Shin Tokyo hyakkei)

In 1929 Hiratsuka, along with seven other artists and the publisher Nakajima Jutaro, undertook the creation of the series Shin Tokyo hayakkei (One Hundred Views of Tokyo).  The series goal was to depict the modern city of Tokyo that arose after the devastating 1923 earthquake.  For more information on this series see Shin Tokyo Hyakkei - One Hundred Views of New Tokyo.

Print Details

 IHL Catalog #392
 Title Nihonbashi
 Series One Hundred Views of Tokyo (Shin Tokyo hyakkei) 
 Hiratsuka Un'ichi (1895-1997)
"Un" printed in lower right corner
 Seal"Hira" circular red seal in lower right of image
 Date originally February 3, 1929 in the series One Hundred Views of New Tokyo (ShinTokyo hyakkei).
 Publisher  The prints were published by the Takujo group through Nakajima Jutaro of the publishing firm called Nihon Sosaku Hanga Club.
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition good - minor wrinkling; tape remnants from prior folio mounting; small missing edge on right margin where removed from folio; tape remnants from previous re-mounting top corners; printers marks in margins
 Genre sosaku hanga (creative print)
 Format chuban
 H x W Paper 8 x 10 5/8 in. (20.3 x 27 cm)
 H x W Image 7 1/8 x 9 1/2 in. (11.1 x 24.1 cm)
 Collections This PrintCarnegie Museum of Art; Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo
 Reference Literature Modern Japanese Prints: The Twentieth Century, Amanda T. Zehnder, Carnegie Museum of Art, 2009, p. 47; Hanga ni miru Tokyo no fukei; Kanto daishinsai kara senzen made, Ota Kuritsu Kyodo Hakubutsukan, 2002, pl. 162, p.41.