Thirty-six Views of Mt. Fuji (富嶽三十六景)
Classic woodblock prints by Hokusai
Architecture & Allied Arts Library
In honor of Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month, the Architecture & Allied Arts Library is exhibiting selections from the classic woodblock series, Thirty-six Views of Mt. Fuji, by Hokusai. The prints on display are from a rare portfolio which reproduces the 1823-33 original set, acquired for the A&AA Library through the Maude Kerns Bequest.
The artist Hokusai (1760-1849) enjoyed a long and productive career, but he achieved his greatest fame late in life. Thirty-six Views of Mt. Fuji, his most celebrated work, depicts the titular mountain from various locations and in different seasons and weather conditions, often serving as a backdrop for scenes of everyday life. These woodblock prints are in the genre of ukiyo-e ("pictures of the floating world"), a style that flourished in Japan during the urbanizing Edo period (1603–1867). The prints were aimed at the upwardly-mobile merchant class, who had become sufficiently wealthy to enjoy a hedonistic lifestyle, indulge in domestic travel, and lavishly decorate their homes.
A&AA Library’s Rare Book Collection includes content representing diverse cultures and is an excellent resource for research and instruction in many disciplines.