Young maiden holding a zither (Koto o idaku musume) about 1800
by Katsushika Hokusai (1760 – 1849)
Katsushika Hokusai (circa October 31, 1760 – May 10, 1849) was a Japanese artist, ukiyo-e painter and printmaker of the Edo period. He was influenced by Sesshu and other styles of Chinese painting. Born in Edo (now Tokyo), Hokusai is best known as author of the woodblock print series Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji which includes the internationally iconic print, The Great Wave off Kanagawa, created during the 1820s.
Hokusai created the “Thirty-Six Views” both as a response to a domestic travel boom and as part of a personal obsession with Mount Fuji. It was this series, specifically The Great Wave print and Fine Wind, Clear Morning, that secured Hokusai’s fame both in Japan and overseas. As historian Richard Lane concludes, “Indeed, if there is one work that made Hokusai’s name, both in Japan and abroad, it must be this monumental print-series”. While Hokusai’s work prior to this series is certainly important, it was not until this series that he gained broad recognition. (From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)