Support: Japanese laid paper
Sheet: 28.1 x 39.9 cm (11 1/16 x 15 11/16 in.); Image: 24 x 36.3 cm (9 7/16 x 14 5/16 in.)
John L. Severance Fund 2001.146
Hasui had a long association with the print publisher Shozaburo Watanabe, an important figure in initiating the shin-hanga movement. From 1906, Watanabe, a keen businessman, sought to benefit from the European and American appetite for archetypal Japanese images based on the ukiyo-e tradition. He commissioned talented artists to produce designs that his artisans translated into high quality woodcuts. Following the model of the great 19th-century landscape artists Katsusika Hokusai and Ando Hiroshige (both also in this exhibition), Hasui specialized in views of an unchanging Japan, eliminating any sign of industrialization or modernization. He was intrigued by seasonal and climatic changes and how they tempered the mood of a composition, and his depiction of snowfall established him as a master. He was designated a "Living National Treasure" by the Japanese government in 1956.
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