It is said that the beginning of the ukiyo-e, the Japanese art of woodblock printings, is the pictures of Kyoto people’s living in late 16th century. After that, the themes of ukiyo-e expanded to popular kabuki actors, beautiful women and landscapes. “Ukiyo” (浮世)means contemporary with hedonisitic and fleeting idea, so ukiyo-e translated as picture of floating world. The origin of ukiyoe was Yamato-e (大和絵, traditional Japanese painting) but drew the line from the field of China art including Kanō School (狩野派). The ukiyo-e artist made the artworks for not the warrior (samurai) class but the ordinary middle class citizens.


The booklist about the outline of ukiyo-e print

Books about ukiyo-e



Takes a thematic approach to this iconic Japanese art form, considering prints by subject matter: geisha and courtesans, kabuki actors, sumo wrestlers, erotica, nature, historical subjects and even images of foreigners in Japan.



Covering the period from the beginning of the Japanese woodblock print in the 1680s until the year 1900, Japanese Woodblock Prints provides a detailed survey of all the famous ukiyo-e artists, along with over 500 full-color prints.



A collection of nearly four hundred Japanese woodcuts from the seventeenth through nineteenth centuries.



The present volume highlights over 130 outstanding examples from the vast holdings of the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Strikingly original and sumptuously colored, the ukiyo-e in these pages recapture the spirit of the period in which they were created.



Filled with brillient colors and breathtakingly beautiful scenes from seventeenth-century Japan, this celebration of the the great Japanese art of woodblock prints introduces readers to the “floating world” of medieval Japan.