Full-color woodblock prints, or Nishiki-e, are a visual medium that was widely available in Japan before the advent of the photograph. In the mid-18th century many foreign goods were imported and modern institutions widely established. Nishiki-e from this period are an invaluable resource as they depict these novel things. The Information Resources Center’s Nishiki-e Project aims to organize information on nishiki-e depicting industrial scenes so that the information can be utilized for research on the modernization of Japanese society.
Woodblock prints originally collected by Shibusawa Keizo for the Museum of Japanese Business History are now housed at the National Institute of Japanese Literature. A Japanese-language catalog is available online.
An essay about the core Dai Nippon Bussan Zue prints is also available online.
an index of scenes of modernization and industrialization
links to libraries, museums, and academic institutions with online collections of nishiki-e