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Jigsaw puzzles from Japan

Bridges

Feature page for July 2016

Bridges are a traditional favourite topic for a jigsaw puzzle: the simple continuity of an arch or catenary makes a good "anchor" for doing the puzzle. This page features bridges across Japan, both ancient and modern, and also one or two from outside portrayed by Japanese artists.

2542 pieces

Kappa bridge, Japan Alps
© Epoch
Position map

2542: Kappa bridge, Japan Alps

This wooden suspension bridge is a landmark of the Kamikochi resort area in the Japan alps, and its span of some 30 metres carries hikers across Azusagawa river. Beyond can be seen some of Japan's most majestic mountains.

The bridge is named for the mythical water-creature, the kappa, which is said to live in deep clear waters such as these.

Wikipedia article on Kappa

* This puzzle has smaller pieces than the standard size.

In stock
An Epoch puzzle: 2542 pieces; 75 x 50 cm (30" x 20")
Code: E75511 (75-511 on box)
Retail price ¥3000 (approx. US$27.78 €24.79 £21.58)
Shipping from ¥1200 (N. America, Europe, Australasia: approx. US$11.11 €9.92 £8.63)
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2016 pieces

Kintai bridge
© Epoch
Position map

2016: Kintai bridge

This bridge is a landmark of western Japan, with both red maples and cherry trees planted alongside, for gorgeous pictures in all seasons. We are told that the name Kintaikyô - or "Brocade sash bridge" - is derived from a resemblance to a kimono sash. This is pretty unconvincing, until you realise that the river under the bridge is Nishikigawa: this Nishiki is the Japanese reading for "brocade", written with the same Chinese character as the Kin in Kintai.

The bridge consists of five wooden arches: at the time it was originally built (1673), wheeled transport was almost unknown in Japan, so presumably it was not worthwhile going to the extra effort of providing a level roadway. It seems unlikely that this design would have been used in Europe at that time.

Matsumoto-san's excellent photographs of the bridge (in Japanese)
Hokusai's painting (Interesting to see his perception of the stone pillars: compare my essay on walls. And for more than you ever needed to know about bridges, read J. E. Gordon.)

* This puzzle has smaller pieces than the standard size.

In stock
An Epoch puzzle: 2016 pieces; 75 x 50 cm (30" x 20")
Code: E23535 (23-535 on box)
Retail price ¥2500 (approx. US$23.15 €20.66 £17.99)
Shipping from ¥1200 (N. America, Europe, Australasia: approx. US$11.11 €9.92 £8.63)
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Kappa bridge, Japan Alps
© Imamura Yutaka
Position map

2016: Kappa bridge, Japan Alps

This wooden suspension bridge is a landmark of the Kamikochi resort area in the Japan alps, and its span of some 30 metres carries hikers across Azusagawa river. Beyond can be seen some of Japan's most majestic mountains.

The bridge is named for the mythical water-creature, the kappa, which is said to live in deep clear waters such as these.

Wikipedia article on Kappa

* This puzzle has smaller pieces than the standard size.

In stock
An Epoch puzzle: 2016 pieces; 75 x 50 cm (30" x 20")
Code: E23547 (23-547 on box)
Retail price ¥2500 (approx. US$23.15 €20.66 £17.99)
Shipping from ¥1200 (N. America, Europe, Australasia: approx. US$11.11 €9.92 £8.63)
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Yokohama Bay Bridge
© Epoch
Position map

2016: Yokohama Bay Bridge

A dramatic view of one of the links in the bay part of the expressway circling the Tokyo-Yokohama metropolis. This is a cable-stayed suspension bridge, a type which became more common with the development of more advanced computer modelling technology around the end of the twentieth century.

* This puzzle has smaller pieces than the standard size.

In stock
An Epoch puzzle: 2016 pieces; 75 x 50 cm (30" x 20")
Code: E23585 (23-585 on box)
Retail price ¥2500 (approx. US$23.15 €20.66 £17.99)
Shipping from ¥1200 (N. America, Europe, Australasia: approx. US$11.11 €9.92 £8.63)
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1000 pieces

Kintai bridge, spring evening
© S Watanabe Color Print
Position map

1000: Kintai bridge, spring evening (Hasui)

A boatman emerges against the setting sun under the arch of this iconic bridge, seen through the cherry trees planted on the river bank. The print was made in 1947.

The bridge consists of five wooden arches: at the time it was originally built (1673), wheeled transport was almost unknown in Japan, and there was therefore no need of a level roadway. It seems unlikely that this design would have been used in Europe at that time.

Watase Hasui (1883-1957) was one of the major artists involved in the revival of woodblock printing in the early twentieth century. He brings a fresh subtlety of expression to this traditional craft.

Apart from a brief period in Shiobara, northern Tochigi, he appears to have lived his whole life in Tokyo, but specialised in landcapes, drawn from his travels across Japan.

Not available
A Beverly puzzle: 1000 pieces; 49 x 72 cm (19" x 28")
Code: B61297 (61-297 on box)
Retail price ¥3000
Rainbow bridge
© Beverly
Position map

1000: Rainbow bridge

One of the best-known landmarks of modern Tokyo, Rainbow Bridge connects one of the growing number of islands created in Tokyo Bay to the original shoreline.

* This puzzle has TINY pieces!

In stock
A Beverly puzzle: 1000 pieces; 38 x 26 cm (15" x 10")
Code: BM71853 (M71-853 on box)
Retail price ¥1800 (approx. US$16.67 €14.88 £12.95)
Shipping from ¥600 (N. America, Europe, Australasia: approx. US$5.56 €4.96 £4.32)
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Tokyo bay area at night
© Epoch
Position map

1000: Tokyo Rainbow Bridge

One of the best-known landmarks of modern Tokyo, Rainbow Bridge connects one of the growing number of artificial islands created in Tokyo Bay to the original shoreline. Using solar power generated during the day, at night it is lit up just as its name suggests.

* This is a glow-in-the-dark puzzle.

In stock
An Epoch puzzle: 1000 pieces; 75 x 50 cm (30" x 20")
Code: E12502 (12-502 on box)
Retail price ¥3200 (approx. US$29.63 €26.45 £23.02)
Shipping from ¥1200 (N. America, Europe, Australasia: approx. US$11.11 €9.92 £8.63)
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Tower Bridge
© Seibi-sha

1000: Tower Bridge (Yamashita)

The artist made a tour of Europe in 1961, resulting in a series of depictions of landmarks such as Tower Bridge in London.

Born in 1922 in Tokyo, Yamashita had a troubled childhood: - after a bullying incident at school involving a knife, he was classified as mentally handicapped, and placed in an institution. His genius for creating harie (pasted paper pictures) was soon realised, though, and eventually he featured in many exhibitions across Japan. He remained an eccentric: from 1940 to 1954 he roamed the country wearing only an undershirt (it is said), earning himself the moniker of "The naked artist wanderer". Although he travelled widely seeking material, including an extended tour of Europe in 1961, it seems he did not work in the field, but would return to his studio and create images entirely from memory. He died in 1971 at the early age of 49.

His story has been dramatised a number of times, in the 1956 film known as "The naked general" and later television series.

In stock
A Yanoman puzzle: 1000 pieces; 75 x 50 cm (30" x 20")
Code: Y101262 (10-1262 on box)
Retail price ¥3000 (approx. US$27.78 €24.79 £21.58)
Shipping from ¥1100 (N. America, Europe, Australasia: approx. US$10.19 €9.09 £7.91)
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450 pieces

Kintai bridge with cherry blossom
© Apollo-sha
Position map

450: Kintai bridge with cherry blossom

This bridge is a landmark of western Japan, with both red maples and cherry trees planted alongside, for gorgeous pictures in all seasons. The name of the river is Nishikigawa, or "Brocade river", and the name of this bridge suggests it is like the sash of a kimono.

The bridge consists of five wooden arches: at the time it was originally built (1673), wheeled transport was almost unknown in Japan, so presumably it was not worthwhile going to the extra effort of providing a level roadway. It seems unlikely that this design would have been used in Europe at that time.

* This puzzle has smaller pieces than the standard size.

Not available
An Apollo puzzle: 450 pieces; 38 x 26 cm (15" x 10")
Code: P46217 (46-217 on box)
Normally ¥1200 - special offer 8% off: ¥1104

420 pieces

Tokyo Gate Bridge and Fuji
© Epoch
Position map

420: Tokyo Gate Bridge and Fuji

Another, different view of Fuji from Tokyo! This unusual bridge is the latest Tokyo landmark, opened in 2012. It is a truss cantilever bridge, and has earned the nickname "Dinosaur Bridge" — can you see why? Anyway, lit up, it provides a striking foreground to the distant mountain.

Wikipedia: Tokyo Gate Bridge

* This puzzle has smaller pieces than the standard size.

In stock
An Epoch puzzle: 420 pieces; 52 x 18 cm (20" x 7")
Code: E52715 (52-715 on box)
Retail price ¥1500 (approx. US$13.89 €12.40 £10.79)
Shipping from ¥600 (N. America, Europe, Australasia: approx. US$5.56 €4.96 £4.32)
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All about ordering (please read first)

300 pieces

Kintai bridge
© Epoch
Position map

300: Kintai bridge

This bridge is a landmark of western Japan, with both red maples and cherry trees planted alongside, for gorgeous pictures in all seasons. We are told that the name Kintaikyô - or "Brocade sash bridge" - is derived from a resemblance to a kimono sash. This is pretty unconvincing, until you realise that the river under the bridge is Nishikigawa: this Nishiki is the Japanese reading for "brocade", written with the same Chinese character as the Kin in Kintai.

The bridge consists of five wooden arches: at the time it was originally built (1673), wheeled transport was almost unknown in Japan, so presumably it was not worthwhile going to the extra effort of providing a level roadway. It seems unlikely that this design would have been used in Europe at that time.

In stock
An Epoch puzzle: 300 pieces; 38 x 26 cm (15" x 10")
Code: E25128 (25-128 on box)
Retail price ¥1200 (approx. US$11.11 €9.92 £8.63)
Shipping from ¥500 (N. America, Europe, Australasia: approx. US$4.63 €4.13 £3.60)
Buy this puzzle Add to basket
All about ordering (please read first)