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Irises in Horikiri. The series "100 famous views of Edo"

Print, 1857, 36.2×25 cm

Description of the artwork «Irises in Horikiri. The series "100 famous views of Edo"»

"Irises at Horikiri" one of the most beautiful sheets of the series Hiroshige "One hundred famous views of Edo". Although this engraving is copied Vincent van Gogh, as in the case of "Flowering plum garden, Kameido"or "Sudden shower over Ohashi bridge at Atake"(see copies of van Gogh), it still inevitably evokes associations with his famous paintings, depicting these beautiful flowers (1, 2, 3, 4, 5).

The Faces Of Edo

Edo (the old name of the capital of Japan, Tokyo) was a frequent guest on the prints of Hiroshige. Whether due to the fact that this city was the birthplace of the artist, or because its special to him warm attachment, Edo in one form or another is present in more than a thousand woodcuts of Hiroshige.

"One hundred famous views of Edo" - the peak of the master, demonstrating his Mature style filigree skills and create prints. The series has a number of features that make it special. First, it is printed on sheets in a vertical format, which at the time was unusual for images of landscapes or domestic scenes.

Also it was the biggest (number of sheets) cycle of woodcuts created in the technique of Nishiki-e "brocade pictures" in Japanese. These prints were printed on expensive paper with a few boards that allowed them to do their polychrome and decorated with embossed and in some cases, mother of pearl, gold and silver powder.

How to determine that before you woodcut Hiroshige from the series? All pages are designed on the following principle. In the upper right corner on a pink or red rectangle indicates the name of the loop, next, on the colored square describes the image on the engraving. The background of this cartouche has varied depending on the color of the prints, and the colors were chosen so that the most beneficial to shade her. And at the bottom, on the vertical red (occasionally yellow) rectangle is signed by the master himself. However, without knowledge of the Japanese language can be trapped: in a similar way after Hiroshige began to make his work and his students.

Iris – the meaning of success

Often when the image of scenery of Hiroshige used the same technique that later assign the Impressionists: put to the forefront large the remarkable objects, "in the shadows" set background activity (1, 2, 3, 4). Was no exception and sheet "Irises at Horikiri": between the sharp leaves of the flowers you can see a sunset scenery and strolling people.

Irises are very popular in Japan. Because of their delicate beauty of a flower is called a "ground Orchid", devote entire festivals and break up the huge parks. The iris garden, Horikiri – the first in the country. It was created by the Meiji Emperor for his wife near the Imperial residence.

At a time when Hiroshige lived in the garden grew more than 5 thousands of colors 130 different varieties. Today, the number of varieties has reached 2 hundred, and is still in the first month of summer tourists flock from all over the world to the festival of irises to enjoy their blooms.

The artist has dedicated this flower of a great variety of engravings. And no wonder: in addition to a pronounced decorativeness, iris is revered by the Japanese as a symbol of courage, thanks to the leaves that resemble swords. 5 may in Japan to celebrate boys, and this day irises adorn the home, the future men. And in Japanese the name of this flower sounds just like the word "success".

Author: Natalia Azarenka
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About the artwork

Art form: Print

Subject and objects: Landscape

Style of art: Ukiyo-e

Technique: Woodcut

Materials: Paper

Date of creation: 1857

Size: 36.2×25 cm

Artwork in selections: 37 selections