Katsushika Hokusai (1760 -1849)
The River Tama in the Province of Musashi
Nishiki-e, polychrome woodcut, Ôban format
H.25,9 cm ; W.37,7 cm
Gift to Rodin from the staff of the Japanese review Shirakaba in July 1911.
This print is the eighth view in the series called Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji by Hokusai. The landscape is cut in two by the band of mist that separates the mountain from the river. The extremely subtle use of blue intensifies the movement of the water and the expressivity of the scenery. The figures, one leading his horse and gazing at the mountain from the shore, the others crossing the river in a boat, add a touch of informality without perturbing the harmony and timeless calm of the landscape into which they merge. Rodin admired Hokusai’s freedom of handling, the simplicity of his interpretation and the virtuosity of his colours. He saw a reflection of his own aspirations.