Utagawa Hiroshige (歌川広重) (artist 1797 – 1858)
Bonito (katsuo) and saxifrage (yukinoshita [雪の下]) from an untitled series known as The Large Fish [魚尽くし]
ca 1832 – 1833
10 in x 14.5 in (Overall dimensions) Japanese woodblock print
Signed: Ichiryūsai Hiroshige ga
Publisher: Nishimuraya Yohachi
(Marks 391 - seal 16-053)
Censor's seal: kiwame
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Minneapolis Institute of Arts
Museum für angewandte Kunst, Vienna
Chazen Museum of Art
Harvard Art Museums
Östasiatiska museet, Stockholm
Östasiatiska Museet, Stockholm
"This series of ten or eleven prints - it is not certain whether a print of trout belongs tothe series or not - was originally commissioned by a poetry club. They were thus first issued as a de luxe kyōka folding albums and all the prints from the first edition... have a centerfold.
Bokashi was added to the upper edge in later impressions..."
The poems are by Toshinoto Haruki and Toshihiro Machikado. The latter wrote:
yuki no shita naru
ajiwai zo yoki
Fresh bonito tastes best
when you let it melt in your mouth
under the snow in Kamakura.
"The name of the flower depicted here means literally 'under the snow'."
There are two early states of this print. One without the publisher's and censor's seal and one with - as in this case.
1) in Hiroshige: Prints and Drawings by Matthi Forrer, #84.
2) in a small black and white reproduction in the Illustrated Catalogues of Tokyo National Museum: Ukiyo-e Prints (3), #3558.
Nishimuraya Yohachi (西村屋与八) (publisher)
kachō-e (bird and flower picture - 花鳥絵) (genre)