The Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For a list of the 53 post stations of the Tōkaidō, see 53 Stations of the Tōkaidō.
Portrait of Hiroshige, his head shaven, at age over fifty,[N 1] by Kunisada.

The Fifty-Three Stations of the Tōkaidō (東海道五十三次 Tōkaidō Gojūsan-tsugi?), in the Hōeidō edition (1833–1834), presented here, is a series of ukiyo-e woodcut prints created by Utagawa Hiroshige after his first travel along the Tōkaidō in 1832.[1]

The Tōkaidō road, linking the shōgun's capital, Edo, to the imperial one, Kyōto, was the main travel and transport artery of old Japan. It is also the most important of the "Five Roads", the five major roads of Japan (Gokaidō), created or developed during the Edo era to further strengthen the control of the central shogunate administration over the whole country.

Even though the Hōeidō edition is by far the best known, The Fifty-Three Stations of the Tōkaidō was such a popular subject that it led Hiroshige to create some 30 different series of woodcut prints on it, all very different one from the other by their size (ōban or chuban), their designs or even their number (some series include just a few prints).

The Hōeidō edition of the Tōkaidō is Hiroshige's best known work, and the best sold ever ukiyo-e Japanese prints.[2] Coming just after Hokusai's Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji series, it established this new major theme of ukiyo-e, the landscape print, or fūkei-ga, with a special focus on "famous views" (meisho). These landscape prints took full advantage of the new possibilities offered by the Western representation of perspective, that Japanese artists had by now fully assimilated. Hiroshige's series met with full success, not only in Japan, but later in Western countries.

The Tōkaidō[edit]

The Tōkaidō was one of the Five Routes constructed under Tokugawa Ieyasu, a series of roads linking the historical capital of Edo with the rest of Japan. The Tōkaidō connected Edo with the then-capital of Kyoto. The most important and well-traveled of these, the Tōkaidō travelled along the eastern coast of Honshū, thus giving rise to its name, which means "Eastern Sea Road". Along this road, there were 53 different post stations, which provided stables, food, and lodging for travelers.

Hiroshige and the Tōkaidō[edit]

In 1832, Hiroshige traveled the length of the Tōkaidō from Edo to Kyoto, as part of an official delegation transporting horses that were to be presented to the Imperial court.[3] The horses were a symbolic gift from the Shogun, presented annually in recognition of the Emperor's divine status.[4]

The landscapes of the journey made a profound impression on the artist, and he created numerous sketches during the course of the trip, as well as his return to Edo via the same route. After his arrival at home, he immediately began work on the first prints from The Fifty-Three Stations of the Tōkaidō.[3] Eventually, he would produce 55 prints in the whole series: one for each station, plus one apiece for the starting and ending points.

The first of the prints in the series was published jointly by the publishing houses of Hōeidō and Senkakudō, with the former handling all subsequent releases on its own.[3] Woodcuts of this style commonly sold as new for between 12 and 16 copper coins apiece, approximately the same price as a pair of straw sandals or a bowl of soup.[5] The runaway success of The Fifty-Three Stations of the Tōkaidō established Hiroshige as the most prominent and successful printmaker of the Tokugawa era.[6]

Hiroshige followed up on this series with The Sixty-nine Stations of the Kiso Kaidō in cooperation with Keisai Eisen, documenting each of the post stations of the Nakasendō (which was alternatively referred to as the Kiso Kaidō).

The Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō (Hōeidō edition)[edit]

Beyond the fifty-three stations of the Tōkaidō proper, the series includes one print for the departure, Nihonbashi (the bridge of Japan), and a final one, the 55th print, Keishi, Kyoto, the imperial capital.

Woodcut print Station No and English name Japanese Transliteration
1
Tokaido Nihonbashi2.jpg
Leaving Edo : Nihonbashi, "the bridge of Japan" 日本橋 Nihonbashi
2
Tokaido01 Shinagawa.jpg
1st station : Shinagawa.[N 2] 品川 Shinagawa
3
Tokaido02 Kawasaki.jpg
2nd station : Kawasaki 川崎 Kawasaki
4
Tokaido03 Kanagawa.jpg
3rd station : Kanagawa 神奈川 Kanagawa
5
Tokaido04 Hodogaya.jpg
4th station : Hodogaya 程ヶ谷, 保土ヶ谷 Hodogaya
6
Tokaido05 Totsuka.jpg
5th station : Totsuka 戸塚 Totsuka
7
Tokaido06 Fujisawa.jpg
6th station : Fujisawa 藤沢 Fujisawa
8
Tokaido07 Hiratsuka.jpg
7th station : Hiratsuka 平塚 Hiratsuka
9
Tokaido08 Oiso.jpg
8th station : Oiso 大磯 Oiso
10
Tokaido09 Odawara.jpg
9th station : Odawara (Crossing the Sakawa river at a ford.) 小田原 Odawara
11
Hiroshige11 hakone.jpg
10th station : Hakone 箱根 Hakone
12
Tokaido11 Mishima.jpg
11th station : Mishima[N 3] 三島 Mishima
13
Hiroshige13 numazu.jpg
12th station : Numazu 沼津 Numazu
14
Tokaido13 Hara.jpg
13th station : Hara Hara
15
Hiroshige15 yoshiwara.jpg
14th station : Yoshiwara 吉原 Yoshiwara
16
Hiroshige16 kanbara.jpg
15th station : Kambara 蒲原 Kanbara
17
Tokaido16 Yui.jpg
16th station : Yui 由井, 由比 Yui
18
Hiroshige18 okitsu.jpg
17th station : Okitsu 興津 Okitsu
19
Hiroshige19 ejiri.jpg
18th station : Ejiri 江尻 Ejiri
20
Hiroshige20 fuchu.jpg
19th station : Fuchū 府中, 駿府 Fuchū
21
Tokaido20 Mariko.jpg
20th station : Mariko 鞠子, 丸子 Mariko
22
Hiroshige22 okabe.jpg
21st station : Okabe 岡部 Okabe
23
Hiroshige23 fujieda.jpg
22nd station : Fujieda 藤枝 Fujieda
24
Hiroshige24 shimada.jpg
23rd station : Shimada 島田 Shimada
25
Hiroshige25 kanaya.jpg
24th station : Kanaya 金屋, 金谷 Kanaya
26
Hiroshige26 nissaka.jpg
25th station : Nissaka 日坂 Nissaka
27
Hiroshige27 kakegawa.jpg
26th station : Kakegawa 掛川 Kakegawa
28
Hiroshige28 fukuroi.jpg
27th station : Fukuroi 袋井 Fukuroi
29
Hiroshige29 mitsuke.jpg
28th station : Mitsuke 見附 Mitsuke
30
Hiroshige30 hamamatsu.jpg
29th station : Hamamatsu 浜松 Hamamatsu
31
Tokaido30 Maisaka.jpg
30th station : Maisaka 舞阪 Maisaka
32
Tokaido31 Arai.jpg
31st station : Arai 荒井, 新居 Arai
33
Tokaido32 Shirasuka.jpg
32nd station : Shirasuka 白須賀 Shirasuka
34
Tokaido33 Futagawa.jpg
33rd station : Futagawa 二川 Futagawa
35
Tokaido34 Yoshida.jpg
34th station : Yoshida 吉田 Yoshida
36
Tokaido35 Goyu.jpg
35th station : Goyu 御油 Goyu
37
Tokaido36 Akasaka.jpg
36th station : Akasaka 赤坂 Akasaka
38
Hiroshige38 fujikawa.jpg
37th station : Fujikawa 藤川 Fujikawa
39
Hiroshige39 okazaki.jpg
38th station : Okazaki 岡崎 Okazaki
40
Tokaido39 Chiryu.jpg
39th station : Chiryu 地鯉鮒, 知立 Chiryu
41
Tokaido40 Narumi.jpg
40th station : Narumi 鳴海 Narumi
42
Hiroshige42 miya.jpg
41st station : Miya Miya
43
Tokaido42 Kuwana.jpg
42nd station : Kuwana 桑名 Kuwana
44
Tokaido43 Yokkaichi.jpg
43rd station : Yokkaichi 四日市 Yokkaichi
45
Hiroshige45 ishiyakushi.jpg
44th station : Ishiyakushi 石薬師 Ishiyakushi
46
Tokaido45 Shono.jpg
45th station : Shōno[N 4] 庄野 Shōno
47
Hiroshige47 kameyama.jpg
46th station : Kameyama 亀山 Kameyama
48
Hiroshige48 seki.jpg
47th station : Seki "the barrier") Seki
49
Hiroshige49 sakanoshita.jpg
48th station : Sakanoshita 坂ノ下 Sakanoshita
50
Hiroshige50 tsuchiyama.jpg
49th station : Tsuchiyama 土山 Tsuchiyama
51
Tokaido50 Minakuchi.jpg
50th station : Minakuchi 水口 Minakuchi
52
Tokaido51 Ishibe.jpg
51st station : Ishibe 石部 Ishibe
53
Tokaido52 Kusatsu.jpg
52nd station : Kusatsu 草津 Kusatsu
54
Tokaido53 Otsu.jpg
53rd station : Otsu 大津 Otsu
55
Hiroshige55 kyoto.jpg
The end of the Tōkaidō: arriving at Kyoto. 京師 Sanjō Ōhashi at Keishi ("the capital")

Historical impact[edit]

During his time in Paris, Vincent van Gogh was an avid collector of ukiyo-e, amassing with his brother a collection of several hundred prints purchased in the gallery of S. Bing.[7] This collection included works from The Fifty-Three Stations of the Tōkaidō, and Van Gogh incorporated stylistic elements from his collection into his own work, such as bright colors, natural details, and unconventional perspectives.[8] In his personal correspondence, he stated, "...all of my work is founded on Japanese art...", and described the Impressionists as "the Japanese of France".[9]

Architect Frank Lloyd Wright was an enthusiastic collector of Hiroshige's prints, including those of The Fifty-Three Stations of the Tōkaidō. In 1906, he staged the first ever retrospective of Hiroshige's work at the Art Institute of Chicago, describing them in the exhibition catalog as some of "the most valuable contributions ever made to the art of the world".[10] Two years later, he contributed elements of his collection to another exhibition of ukiyo-e at the Art Institute. Wright also designed the gallery space of the exhibit, which at that time was the largest display of its kind in history.[10] Appreciating the prints on a professional level as well as an aesthetic one, Wright mined his prints for insights into the nature of designing structures, modifying damaged prints by adding lines and shadow in an effort to understand their operating principles.[11]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Indeed, Hiroshige had his head shaved, so as to become a novice Buddhist monk under the name of Tokubei.
  2. ^ Shinagawa overlooked the Shinagawa bay, south of Edo ; the seashore was strewn with brothels, where courtesans received their clients. Balconies were overlooking the beautiful seascapes of the bay, depicted by Kiyonage in his famous series of diptychs, Minami no Juniko (the twelve months of the South)
  3. ^ Mishima compte à juste titre parmi les estampes les plus connues de la série. Elle est très représentative de l'intérêt porté par Hiroshige aux ambiances particulières, brumes, neige, ou encore paysage nocturnes.
  4. ^ Shōno is one of the most famous prints of the whole series.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005). "Tōkaidō Gojūsan tsugi" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 973.
  2. ^ Forbes, Andrew; Henley, David (2014). Utagawa Hiroshige's 53 Stations of the Tokaido. Chiang Mai: Cognoscenti Books. B00LM4APAI (full series)
  3. ^ a b c Oka, Isaburō. Hiroshige: Japan's Great Landscape Artist, p. 75. Kodansha International, 1992. ISBN 4-7700-2121-6
  4. ^ Hagen, Rose-Marie, and Rainer Hagen. Masterpieces in Detail: What Great Paintings Say, Vol. 2, p. 357. Taschen, 2000. ISBN 3-8228-1372-9
  5. ^ Hagen & Hagen, Masterpieces in Detail, p. 352.
  6. ^ Goldberg, Steve. "Hiroshige" in Lives & Legacies: An Encyclopedia of People Who Changed the World - Writers and Musicians, Ed. Michel-André Bossy, Thomas Brothers & John C. McEnroe, p.86. Greenwood Press, 2001. ISBN 1-57356-154-1
  7. ^ Edwards, Cliff. Van Gogh and God: A Creative Spiritual Quest", p. 90. Loyola Press, 1989. ISBN 0-8294-0621-2
  8. ^ Edwards. Van Gogh and God, p. 94.
  9. ^ Edwards. Van Gogh and God, p. 93.
  10. ^ a b Fowler, Penny. Frank Lloyd Wright: Graphic Artist, p. 30. Pomegranate, 2002. ISBN 0-7649-2017-0
  11. ^ Fowler, Frank Lloyd Wright, p. 31.

External links[edit]