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Five Pines, Onagi Canal, No. 97 from One Hundred Famous Views of Edo

Utagawa Hiroshige (Ando)

Asian Art

The large pine tree in the foreground, its overhanging branch carefully supported by three posts, is another one of several famous pines depicted in this series. The name Five Pines originated in the planting of five separate trees at intervals along the Onagi Canal. By this date, four had died, leaving only this one. It was a huge old tree, growing out over the water from within the walls of an estate of the daimyo, or military lord, of Ayabe.

MEDIUM Woodblock print
  • Place Made: Japan
  • DATES 7th month of 1856
    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. Date and censor seal at top margin.
    SIGNATURE Hiroshige-ga
    COLLECTIONS Asian Art
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    ACCESSION NUMBER 30.1478.97
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Anna Ferris
    RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
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    CAPTION Utagawa Hiroshige (Ando) (Japanese, 1797-1858). Five Pines, Onagi Canal, No. 97 from One Hundred Famous Views of Edo, 7th month of 1856. Woodblock print, Sheet: 14 3/16 x 9 1/4 in. (36 x 23.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Anna Ferris, 30.1478.97
    IMAGE overall, 30.1478.97_PS1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2006
    "CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION The Onagi Canal in Gohonmatsu was in fact absolutely straight, but the artist has provided a curve in it for a more appealing composition. Originally there were five pine trees planted along the Onagi Canal, but four had died, leaving only this one, supported by three posts. In Hiroshige's time this was a very large old tree, growing out over the water within the walls of the Kuki estate, belonging to the daimyo of Ayabe. The tree finally fell victim to pollution, killed by smoke and dust from the Suzuki Cement factory that replaced the Kuki estate. The tree's girth was reported at thirteen feet. In the center a man is dragging his towel in the water. This same detail in a similar type of boat appeared in "View of Sunset Over Ryogoku Bridge from Ouyagashi Ferry" in Hokusai's famous "Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji" series in the early 1830's.
    RECORD COMPLETENESS Best (88%)
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