Artist: Ando Utagawa Hiroshige (1787-1858)
Woodblock Prints Title: Yatsumi Bridge (Yatsumi no hashi), from the series One Hundred Famous Views of Edo (Meisho Edo hyakkei)
1st Publication: August 1856
Size: Vertical ˘ban; 35.7 x 23 cm (14 1/16 x 9 1/16 in.)
Date of this edition: August 1856, 1st edition
Publisher: Uoya Eikichi
Condition: Yellow color fadded, turning the green into blue. Left margin partially trimmed, trimming also the publisher seal. A few clear spots not visibly affecting the print, mainly in the upper margin. Very good impression, showing the wood grain of the originals wood blocks, good overall condition.
Notes: This is an extremely rare first edition, Deluxe edition with Mica in the tree trunk, and in the river bank. Usually, this technique was reserved for good customer or prestigious people, as the technology was fairly new, expensive and difficult to master. Great print, great colors, splendid wood marks from the original block, mica, a real masterpiece from this 100 views of Edo series.
More about this print: Although Yatsumi Bridge literally means "Eight-View Bridge," a more accurate translation would be "Eight-Bridge View" since from it one could see eight different bridges, including Yatsumi itself, on which the viewer is standing. This bridge was one of the busiest in Edo and joined the mouth of the Nihonbashi River with the outer moat of Edo Castle. So heavily traveled was the bridge that its southern approach served as the site of a stone post on which notices of lost children were pasted. The only allusion to this bustling site in an otherwise placid scene is the two parasols moving along at the lower left.
Pictures: Pictures are taken outdoor, in the shade, to reflect true colors, without any enhancements of any kind. The last picture is taken indoor, with a light behind the print, to reveal the exact paper grain, holes if any, or other possible flaws.