三代歌川豐國 Utagawa Toyokuni III（1786-1865）
Shubi no Matsu, from the series of Famous places of Edo compared with 100 wonderful women
木版画｜纵绘大判｜36.4cm x 25.2cm
Woodblock-print｜Oban tate-e｜36.4cm x 25.2cm
This print -- "Matsuo Pine" -- is from 100 Beauties Matched with Famous Sites of Edo, one of Kunisada-Toyokuni III's last great serieses. The master drew the beautiful women (bijin) while his students drew the little landscapes depicting spots in Edo. In this print, the landscape is by Kunihisa.
The title refers to a pine tree on the edge of the Sumida River in Asakusa. It was visible from the boat route used to get to Yoshiwara, and thus became a landmark for the boatmen and their passengers. It is said that the river area around the pine is famous for its plump clams and fish. Perhaps this is why the artist has the beauty in the flower-diamond kimono fishing from the pleasure boat.
She has black teeth, signifying that she is married. Although the bijin is the only one pictured -- as is the case with all the prints in this wonderful series -- we can see a fishing rod beside her -- her husband, perhaps? A red tray with dishes covered with cloth is to her left. You can imagine the couple after the sun goes down, the husband and wife tired of fishing, putting down the curtains and enjoying the delicious food and the cozy scene.
Incredible condition; Holes restored on the upper left.