woodcut, 36,8- 25 cm. - Tokyo, Museum of Fuji Art
Ando Hiroshige is considered to have been the last great master of the Japanese ukiyo-e tradition, interested -as well as Hokusai- in the natural world and landscape. His unquestionable masterpiece is the series of “One Hundred Famous Views of Edo”, from which this scene is perhaps its most famous composition.
In many senses, this woodcut is an authentic "impressionist" work. Hiroshige has depicted the precise moment in which the thin but strong summer rain -which he denominated “white rain”- falls over the Atake Bridge. The sensation of dynamism caused by the multiple rain drops, the figures sheltering under the umbrellas, and the boat looking for a safe place is simply fabulous. The work was much admired by Vincent van Gogh, who admitted that he envied the Japanese painters for “their style, as simple as breathing”. In fact, the Dutch painter made a copy of the work, now exhibited in the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.
Texto: G. Fernández, www.theartwolf.com