Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji

Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji (Japanese: 富嶽三十六景, Hepburn: Fugaku Sanjūrokkei) is a series of landscape prints by the Japanese ukiyo-e artist Hokusai (1760–1849). The series depicts Mount Fuji from different locations and in various seasons and weather conditions. The immediate success of the publication led to another ten prints being added to the series.

The Great Wave off Kanagawa, the best known print in the series (20th century reprint)

The series was produced from c. 1830 to 1832, when Hokusai was in his seventies and at the height of his career, and published by Nishimura Yohachi.[1][2] Among the prints are three of Hokusai's most famous: The Great Wave off Kanagawa, Fine Wind, Clear Morning, and Thunderstorm Beneath the Summit.[1] The lesser-known Kajikazawa in Kai Province is also considered one of the series' best works.[3] The Thirty-six Views has been described as the artist's "indisputable colour-print masterpiece".[2]


Mount Fuji is a popular subject for Japanese art due to its cultural and religious significance. This belief can be traced to The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter, where a goddess deposits the elixir of life on the peak. As the historian Henry Smith[4] explains, "Thus from an early time, Mt. Fuji was seen as the source of the secret of immortality, a tradition that was at the heart of Hokusai's own obsession with the mountain."[5]

Each image was made through a process whereby Hokusai's drawing on paper was glued to a woodblock to guide the carving. The original design is therefore lost in the process. The block was then covered with ink and applied to paper to create the image (see Woodblock printing in Japan for further details). The complexity of Hokusai's images includes the wide range of colors he used, which required the use of a separate block for each color appearing in the image.

The earliest prints in the series were made with largely blue tones (aizuri-e), including the key blocks which provide an image's outlines.[2] Prussian blue pigment had not long been introduced to Japan from Europe and Hokusai used it extensively, ensuring its popularity. Once the publisher, Nishimura, was sure of the series' success, prints were made with multiple colours (nishiki-e). Nishimura had planned to expand the series to more than a hundred prints, but publication stopped at forty-six.[6]

The most famous single image from the series is widely known in English as The Great Wave off Kanagawa. It is Hokusai's most celebrated work and is often considered the most recognizable work of Japanese art in the world. Another iconic work from Thirty-six Views is Fine Wind, Clear Morning, also known as Red Fuji, which has been described as "one of the simplest and at the same time one of the most outstanding of all Japanese prints".[7]


While Hokusai's Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji is the most famous ukiyo-e series to focus on Mount Fuji, there are several other works with the same subject, including Hiroshige's later series Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji and Hokusai's subsequent book One Hundred Views of Mount Fuji (published 1834-1835).[5]

In his 1896 book on Hokusai, French art critic Edmond de Goncourt wrote that despite its "rather crude colors", it was, "the album which inspires the landscapes of the impressionists of the present moment."[2] The French artist Henri Rivière (1864–1951) published the set of color lithographs "Thirty-six views of the Tour Eiffel" in 1902, inspired by the seminal print set of Hokusai, one of the many influences of Japanese art on late 19th century and early 20th century French art (Japonism, known as "Japonisme" in French)


Original thirty-sixEdit

No. Image English title Japanese title
1   The Great Wave off Kanagawa 神奈川沖浪裏

Kanagawa oki nami-ura

2   Fine Wind, Clear Morning, also known as South Wind, Clear Sky or Red Fuji 凱風快晴

Gaifū kaisei

3   Thunderstorm Beneath the Summit 山下白雨

Sanka hakuu

4   Under Mannen Bridge at Fukagawa 深川万年橋下

Fukagawa Mannen-bashi shita

5   Sundai, Edo 東都駿台

Tōto sundai

6   Cushion Pine at Aoyama 青山円座松

Aoyama enza-no-matsu

7   Senju, Musashi But 武州千住

Bushū Senju

8   Inume Pass, Kōshū 甲州犬目峠

Kōshū inume-tōge

9   Fuji View Field in Owari Province 尾州不二見原

Bishū Fujimigahara

10   Ejiri in Suruga Province 駿州江尻

Sunshū Ejiri

11   A sketch of the Mitsui shop in Suruga in Edo (present-day Muromachi, Tokyo) 江都駿河町三井見世略図

Kōto Suruga-cho Mitsui Miseryakuzu

12   Sunset across the Ryōgoku bridge from the bank of the Sumida River at Onmayagashi 御厩川岸より両国橋夕陽見

Ommayagashi yori ryōgoku-bashi yūhi mi

13   Sazai hall – Temple of Five Hundred Rakan 五百らかん寺さざゐどう

Gohyaku-rakanji Sazaidō

14   Tea house at Koishikawa. The morning after a snowfall 礫川雪の旦

Koishikawa yuki no ashita

15   Shimomeguro 下目黒


16   Watermill at Onden 隠田の水車

Onden no suisha

17   Enoshima in Sagami Province 相州江の島

Soshū Enoshima

18   Shore of Tago Bay, Ejiri at Tōkaidō 東海道江尻田子の浦略図

Tōkaidō Ejiri tago-no-uraryakuzu

19   Yoshida at Tōkaidō 東海道吉田

Tōkaidō Yoshida

20   The Kazusa Province sea route 上総の海路

Kazusa no kairo

21   Nihonbashi bridge in Edo 江戸日本橋

Edo Nihon-bashi

22   Barrier Town on the Sumida River 隅田川関屋の里

Sumidagawa Sekiya no sato

23   Bay of Noboto 登戸浦


24   The lake of Hakone in Sagami Province 相州箱根湖水

Sōshū Hakone kosui

25   Mount Fuji reflects in Lake Kawaguchi, seen from the Misaka Pass in Kai Province 甲州三坂水面

Kōshū Misaka suimen

26   Hodogaya on the Tōkaidō 東海道保土ケ谷

Tōkaidō Hodogaya

27   Tama River in Musashi Province 武州玉川

Bushū Tamagawa

28   Asakusa Hongan-ji temple in the Eastern capital [Edo] 東都浅草本願寺

Tōto Asakusa honganji

29   Tsukuda Island in Musashi Province 武陽佃島

Buyō Tsukuda-jima

30   Shichiri beach in Sagami Province 相州七里浜

Soshū Shichiri-ga-hama

31   Umezawa in Sagami Province 相州梅沢庄

Soshū umezawanoshō

32   Kajikazawa in Kai Province 甲州石班沢

Kōshū Kajikazawa

33   Mishima Pass in Kai Province 甲州三嶌越

Kōshū Mishima-goe

34   Mount Fuji from the mountains of Tōtōmi 遠江山中

Tōtōumi sanchū

35   A View of Mount Fuji Across Lake Suwa (Lake Suwa in Shinano Province) 信州諏訪湖

Shinshū Suwa-ko

36   Ushibori in Hitachi Province 常州牛掘

Jōshū Ushibori

Additional 10Edit

No. Image English title Japanese title
1   Goten-yama-hill, Shinagawa on the Tōkaidō 東海道品川御殿山の不二

Tōkaidō Shinagawa Goten'yama no Fuji

2   Honjo Tatekawa, the timberyard at Honjo, Sumida 本所立川

Honjo Tatekawa

3   Pleasure District at Senju 従千住花街眺望の不二

Senju Hana-machi Yori Chōbō no Fuji

4   Nakahara in Sagami Province 相州仲原

Sōshū Nakahara

5   Ōno Shinden in Suruga Province 駿州大野新田

Sunshū Ōno-shinden

6   Climbing on Fuji 諸人登山

Shojin tozan

7   The Tea plantation of Katakura in Suruga Province 駿州片倉茶園の不二

Sunshū Katakura chaen no Fuji

8   The Fuji from Kanaya on the Tōkaidō 東海道金谷の不二

Tōkaidō Kanaya no Fuji

9   Dawn at Isawa in Kai Province 甲州伊沢暁

Kōshū Isawa no Akatsuki

10   The back of Fuji from the Minobu river 身延川裏不二

Minobu-gawa ura Fuji


A collection of Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji prints contained in the wellness spa of the Costa Concordia was lost during the collision of the ship on January 13, 2012.[8]

All forty-six prints (the original thirty-six plus the ten additions) were featured in the exhibition "Hokusai: 36 Views of Mount Fuji" at the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, the Smithsonian's museums of Asian art, in the spring of 2012.

The Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji prints were displayed at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston as part of a Hokusai exhibit April 5 through August 9, 2015.[9]

The Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji prints were displayed at the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia as part of a Hokusai exhibit 21 July through 22 October 2017, featuring two copies of The Great Wave off Kanagawa, one from the NGV and one from Japan Ukiyo-e Museum.[10]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Calza, p. 30
  2. ^ a b c d Calza, p. 470
  3. ^ Calza, p. 472
  4. ^ Smith, Henry (1988). One Hundred Views of Mount Fuji. Thames and Hudson. ISBN 9780500235188.
  5. ^ a b Smith
  6. ^ Calza, p. 230
  7. ^ Calza, p. 471
  8. ^ "Costa Concordia: Threat of treasure hunters". To Be A Travel Agent.
  9. ^ "Hokusai Features Legendary Artist, Best Known for Iconic Great Wave".
  10. ^ "Hokusai".


  • Nagata, Seiji (1999). Hokusai: Genius of the Japanese Ukiyo-e. Kodansha, Tokyo.
  • Smith, Henry D. II (1988). Hokusai: One Hundred Views of Mt. Fuji. George Braziller, Inc., Publishers, New York. ISBN 0-8076-1195-6.
  • Calza, Gian Carlo (2003). Hokusai. Phaidon. ISBN 0714844578.

External linksEdit