Collections: Asian Art: Aoi Slope, Outside Toranomon Gate, No. 113 from One Hundred Famous Views of Edo

  • 1st Floor
    Arts of Africa, Steinberg Family Sculpture Garden
  • 2nd Floor
    Arts of Asia and the Islamic World
  • 3rd Floor
    Egyptian Art, European Paintings
  • 4th Floor
    Contemporary Art, Decorative Arts, Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art
  • 5th Floor
    Luce Center for American Art

Hiroshige's One Hundred Famous Views of Edo

Hiroshige's 118 woodblock landscape and genre scenes of mid-nineteenth-century Tokyo, is one of the greatest achievements of Japanese art.

    On View: Saint Lawrence Distributing Alms to the Poor

    A horizontal panel that supports the main altarpiece, a predella often presents narrative scenes from the life of the saint or holy figure w...


    Login to play

    Login with Google ID

    Forgot your password?

    Not a Posse member? Register

    Brooklyn Museum Posse:
    Exploring the collection

    When you join the posse, your tags comments and favorites will display with your attribution and save to your profile.

    Want to add this object to a set? Please join the Posse, or log in.


    30.1478.113_PS1.jpg 30.1478.113.jpg

    Aoi Slope, Outside Toranomon Gate, No. 113 from One Hundred Famous Views of Edo

    Why are two half-naked figures out on such a chilly night? It was customary for artisan apprentices to engage in kan-mairi, wintry nighttime visits to temples and shrines where they would bathe in icy water to temper their bodies and offer prayers to the gods for the refinement of their skills. These two apprentices are returning from a visit to Konpira Shrine, which lay directly behind and to the right. Like the bundled figures on Aoi Slope to the left, they carry lanterns; the lantern of the shorter apprentice bears the name of the shrine god, Konpira Daigongen. The other apprentice also holds a small bell, which he rings as they hurry bravely through the cold.

    • Artist: Utagawa Hiroshige (Ando), Japanese, 1797-1858
    • Medium: Woodblock print
    • Place Made: Japan
    • Dates: 11th month of 1857
    • Period: Edo Period, Ansei Era
    • Dimensions: Sheet: 14 3/16 x 9 1/4 in. (36 x 23.5 cm) Image: 13 3/8 x 8 3/4 in. (34 x 22.2 cm)  (show scale)
    • Markings: Publisher: Shitaya Uo Ei
    • Signature: Hiroshige-ga
    • Collections:Asian Art
    • Museum Location: This item is not on view
    • Accession Number: 30.1478.113
    • Credit Line: Gift of Anna Ferris
    • Rights Statement: No known copyright restrictions
    • Caption: Utagawa Hiroshige (Ando) (Japanese, 1797-1858). Aoi Slope, Outside Toranomon Gate, No. 113 from One Hundred Famous Views of Edo, 11th month of 1857. Woodblock print, Sheet: 14 3/16 x 9 1/4 in. (36 x 23.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Anna Ferris, 30.1478.113
    • Image: overall, 30.1478.113_PS1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2006
    • Catalogue Description: To the left in this view is the Aoi Slope of the title, along which some people, obviously chilled by the cold air, are walking with the aid of their lanterns. The water pouring over the spillway to the right is the overflow from Tameike Pond, which fell into the Outer Moat and passed by the Toranomon Gate (not seen here). The two large barren trees to the left are hackberry trees from which Enoki Slope (further to the left) took its name. At right is Sanno Hill and the gray temple buildings of Sanno Shrine. In the foreground, the two almost naked figures are artisan apprentices; it was their custom at the coldest time of the year to visit temples and shrines at night and bathe in the icy water and offer prayers to the gods for the refinement of their skills. The younger apprentice carries a lantern which bears the name of the shrine god, Konpira Daigongen, while the older one is ringing a small bell. Behind the stray dogs are the portable stalls of noodle vendors, hung with red lanterns. Tameike Pond was drained and leveled in the mid-1880's and Aoi Slope now survives as a street in front of Toranomon Hospital.
    • Record Completeness: Best (88%)
    advanced 106,006 records currently online.

    Separate each tag with a space: painting portrait.

    Or join words together in one tag by using double quotes: "Brooklyn Museum."

    Tags by Posse members
    • ninakuriloff (5)
      • landscape
      • trees
      • figures
      • One Hundred Famous Views of Edo
      • Utagawa Hiroshige
    • tld (7)
      • dog
      • cat
      • ritual
      • apprentice
      • gods
      • prayer
      • shrine
    • artsl (1)
      • 19th Century
    • RajArumugam (2)
      • kan-mairi
      • Konpira Daigongen
    • not_here (12)
      • night
      • walking
      • path
      • tree
      • print
      • woodblock
      • japanese
      • edo
      • stars
      • moon
      • gate
      • hiroshige
    Recent Comments
    09:46 07/11/2011

    O it’s cold, so darned cold
    this winter night
    witnessed by the crescent and distant stars
    but still I jumped into the icy water:
    did you see? – I was the first –
    I did not hesitate like the others
    gathered there
    and I said my prayers as I jumped in,
    I said:
    Konpira Daigongen -
    foremost of the 12 Yakushi Generals -
    will protect me…!”
    But now as we hurry back
    O it’s cold, so darned cold
    this winter night

    well hurry
    you silly boy –
    as it’s so cold
    if you talk so much and delay
    you’ll turn stone and cold like
    your Konpira Daigongen!
    So just listen to the peals of my bell
    and let’s hurry along, quiet
    back to our master’s lodge
    before we turn cold and like stone
    and we’ll look quite a sight in the morning
    naked, still and in the street
    just in our loincloth…
    move it, boy; quit talking, keep moving…

    Please review the comment guidelines before posting.

    Before you comment...

    We get a lot of comments, so before you post yours, check to see if your issue is addressed by one of the questions below. Click on a question to see our answer:

    Why are some objects not on view?

    The Museum’s permanent collections are very large and only a fraction of these can be on exhibition at any given time. Sometimes works are lent to other museums for special exhibitions; sometimes they are in the conservation laboratory for study or maintenance. Certain types of objects, such as watercolors, textiles, and photographs, are sensitive to light and begin to fade if they are exposed for too long, so their exhibition time is limited. Finally, as large as the Museum is, there is not enough room to display everything in the collections. In order to present our best works, collections are rotated periodically.

    How do I find out how much an object in the Brooklyn Museum collections is worth?

    The Museum does not disclose the monetary values of objects in its collections.

    Can you tell me the value of an artwork that I own?

    The Museum does not provide monetary appraisals. To determine the value of an object or to find an appraiser, you may contact the Art Dealers Association of America or the American Society of Appraisers.

    I own a similar object. Can you tell me more about it?

    Please submit via e-mail a photograph of the object you own and as much information about it as you can, and we will provide any additional information we are able to find. Please note that research in our files is a lengthy process, and you may not have a response for some time.

    How would I go about lending or gifting a work to the Museum or seeing if the Museum is interested in purchasing a work that I own?

    Please submit via e-mail a photograph of the object you would like us to consider, as well as all of the information you have about it, and your offer will be forwarded to the appropriate curator. The Brooklyn Museum collections are very rich, and we have many works that are not currently on exhibition; because of this, and because storage space is limited, we are very selective about adding works. However, the collection has become what it is today through the generosity of the public, and we continue to be grateful for this generosity, which can still lead to exciting new acquisitions.

    How can I get a reproduction of a work in your collection?

    Please see the Museum’s information on Image Services.

    How can I show my work to someone at the Museum or be considered for an exhibition?

    Please see the Museum’s Artist Submission Guidelines.

    Why do many objects not have photographs and/or complete descriptions?

    The Museum's collection is very large, and we are constantly in the process of adding photographs and descriptions to works that do not currently have them, or replacing photographs that have deteriorated beyond use and descriptions that are minimal or out of date. This is a long and expensive process that takes time.

    How can I find a conservator or get advice on how to treat my artwork?

    Please visit the American Institute for Conservation, which has a feature on how to find a conservator.

    I have a comment or question which is not included in this list.

    Join the posse or log in to work with our collections. Your tags, comments and favorites will display with your attribution.