used a technique of printing designs from planks of wood incised parallel to the vertical axis of the wood’s grain. It is one of the oldest methods of making prints from a relief surface, having been used in China to decorate textiles since the 5th century ad. In Europe, printing from wood blocks on textiles was known from the early 14th century
Japanese artist Hiroshige was one of the last great masters of the ukiyo-e school of woodblock printing. Although ukiyo-e was more commonly associated with depictions of courtesans, entertainers, and the street life of Tokugawa-era Edo (“ukiyo-e” means “pictures of the floating world” in Japanese; the “floating world” was a euphemism for the entertainment quarters of Edo and other large cities), Hiroshige applied its conventions to landscapes. This brought him to the attention of Western painters, and Impressionists and Post-Impressionists recognized the skills of the self-taught master. His works remain some of the most evocative and enduring of the ukiyo-e genre.