Dyers’ Quarter, Kanda (1857) by Hiroshige Ando

Dyers' Quarter, Kanda - Hiroshige Ando - 1857

Artwork Information

TitleDyers' Quarter, Kanda
ArtistHiroshige Ando
Dimensions13 1/4 x 8 5/8 in.
Current LocationThe Brooklyn Museum

About Dyers' Quarter, Kanda

Hiroshige Ando’s 1857 woodblock print, part of the “100 Famous Views of Edo” series, depicts an autumnal scene from the Dyers’ Quarter in Kanda, Japan. The print shows long strips of freshly dyed cotton fabric hanging from drying platforms with monogrammed fabric strips in the center dominating the composition. This particular dyers’ quarter was located approximately one mile north of the artist’s house.

What makes this artwork unique is the sensational wind that can be felt by viewers, caused by the swaying of suspended material on display. The use of color and perspective conveys a sense of space and depth within a flat vertical composition format characteristic to Japanese prints, known as oban format. The artwork’s dimensions measure 13 15/16 x 8 15/16 inches for image size and 14 3/16 x 9 1/4 inches for sheet size.

This piece provides insight into life within Kanda’s Dyers’ Quarter during Hiroshige Ando’s time. Additionally, it demonstrates how art could be used as a vehicle for capturing life within communities that serve specific purposes in society. This piece also highlights Hiroshige Ando’s talent for creating compositions that evoke sensory reactions from viewers through integrating movement into still imagery using minimalistic style elements commonly found in ukiyo-e prints at the time.

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