Ura Gyokukin (act. early 19th century)
View of the Port of Nagasaki with the Dutch island of Deshima
Signed Ura Gyokukin, sealed Kinpo and another seal, the caligraphy signed Hanko Okada (Okada Hanko; 1782-1846), sealed Denshuku and another seal.
Hanging scroll, ink and colour on paper, 76 x 123 cm
This picture shows a true view of Nagasaki port with a Dutch ship saluting while entering the bay, a Dutch ship anchored, two Chinese junks, and many Japanese rowing boats. Fixed to the mainland by a small bridge and flying the Dutch flag is the small man-made fan-shaped island of Deshima where the Dutch were restricted to, and next to it the square artificial island where the Chinese were based. Nagasaki was a small fishing village in the 16th century but because it was the only Japanese harbour open to the outside world during the country’s policy of national seclusion, sakoku (1639-1856), it grew to become one of the most important cities in Japan by the late 17th century.
Several similar views of Nagasaki harbour have been painted by Kawahara Keiga (1786 – c. 1860), see for instance Uit Verre Streken, June 2017, item 54.