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Katsushika Hokusai, 'Rainstorm Beneath the Summit' (Sanka haku'u), a colour woodblock print

 

Height: 241.000 mm
Width: 365.000 mm

Asia JA 1906.12-20.0526

    Katsushika Hokusai, 'Rainstorm Beneath the Summit' (Sanka haku'u), a colour woodblock print

    Japan, AD 1830-33

    From the series 'Thirty-Six Views of Mt. Fuji' (Fugaku sanjū-rokkei)

    This print is only superficially different in composition toHokusai's 'South Wind, Clear Sky', and yet the two designs are deliberately contrasting, down to the smallest detail. The calm, bright dawn has given way to agitation and darkness, as a sudden storm erupts around the base of the mountain, with jagged lightning forming an untidy echo of the slopes.

    The manner of drawing Fuji's triple summit with a deep ravine on the left side is interpreted to show the 'back' (that is, north) side of Mt Fuji. If this is so, then Hokusai's intention may have been to set up poetic contrasts between this and the previous design, of front/back, morning/evening, fair weather/storm.

    T. Clark, 100 views of Mount Fuji (London, The British Museum Press, 2001)

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