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Article

Tadashi Kobayashi

[ Mori ]

( fl Edo [now Tokyo], 1760–94; d c. 1794).

Japanese print designer and book illustrator . He may have been a pupil of the ukiyoe (‘pictures of the floating world’) artist Ishikawa Yukimoto. He is principally known for prints of the following types: hosōban (‘narrow format’, c. 320×150 mm); yakushae (‘pictures of actors’) and bijinga (‘pictures of beautiful women’). In its eclecticism, his style resembles that of his contemporaries, Katsukawa Shunshō ( see Katsukawa family, §1 ) and Suzuki Harunobu , who incorporated a lyricism with a naturalistic depiction of the subject. In 1770 Bunchō collaborated with Harunobu and Shunshō to produce Ehon butai ōgi (‘Picture book of stage fans’; untraced), which featured a new type of yakushae, yakusha nigaoe (‘pictures of likenesses of actors’) and challenged the traditional dominance of theatre illustration by the Torii family school. In Ehon butai ōgi, Bunchō depicted onnagata (kabuki actors playing female roles), while Shunshō illustrated kata keyaki (kabuki villains). Bunchō abandoned ...

Article

Choki  

Japanese, 18th – 19th century, male.

Active 1760-1800.

Painter, print artist. Portraits, genre scenes.

Choki was active in Edo (Tokyo) from 1773 to 1811. He was a pupil of Toriyama Sekien and illustrated his master’s books. His portraits, especially of women, are distinguished by the elegance of their drawing and their rich, harmonious colouring. An ukiyo-e artist, he could render a snowfall or a sultry, starlit night with equal lyricism: the influence of Sharaku and Haronubu, among others, can be discerned in his work. He is particularly famous for his portraits of beautiful women in bust form, a new genre in about ...

Article

Chinese, 20th century, male.

Active in the USA from 1980.

Born 7 October 1939, in Shanxi.

Painter, draughtsman, screen printer, illustrator. Figures, scenes with figures, landscapes, landscapes with figures, flowers. Postage stamps, murals.

Ding Shaoguang studied at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing in ...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1909, in Gumma Prefecture; died 1935.

Painter, print artist, illustrator.

Fujimaki Yoshio’s work was published in 1931in the print artists’ magazine Kitsutsuki. In 1931 and 1932, he took part in events at the Japan Print Association. In 1935, he began a series of illustrations for a book on the Sumidagawa, the river that crosses Tokyo, but he died before completing them. His early style swung between expressionism and cubism and later evolved into a form of abstraction....

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1898, in Shin Hotta (Niigata); died 1979.

Painter, print artist, illustrator.

Acting on the recommendation of the mayor of Niigata, Fukiya Koji went to study under the painter Otake in Tokyo at the age of 14. Between 1916 and 1919...

Article

Gyokuso  

Japanese, 19th century, male.

Activec.1830.

Painter, engraver, illustrator.

Gyokuso was an illustrator from Osaka.

Article

Tadashi Kobayashi

[Suzuki Hozumi; Shikojin, Chōeiken]

(b ?Edo [now Tokyo], ?1725; d Edo, 1770).

Japanese printmaker, book illustrator and painter. A central figure in the development of ukiyoe (‘pictures of the floating world’) woodblock printmaking during the mid-Edo (1600–1868) period (see Japan §X 3., (iii)), Harunobu’s most important contribution was the introduction of the first full-colour printing technique to Japan. Stylistically, the new image of feminine beauty that Harunobu created in his bijinga (‘pictures of beautiful women’) single-sheet prints influenced a generation of ukiyoe artists. Like many Edo period ukiyoe masters, Harunobu left few clues to his identity. He was probably born into the chōnin (merchant and artisan) class. An entry referring to Harunobu’s death in the Nishikawaka kakochō (‘Death registry of the Nishikawa family’) indicates that he had a close association with the family of the Kyoto ukiyoe artist Nishikawa Sukenobu. His treatment of trees, shrubs and rocks in his bird-and-flower (kachō) painting on folding screens (...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Active in France from 1918.

Born 9 December 1891, in Yokohama; died 13 December 1980, in Paris.

Painter (gouache), watercolourist, engraver, illustrator. Landscapes with figures, still-lifes, flowers.

After graduating from Meiji University in Tokyo, Hasegawa Kiyoshi studied oil painting with Okada Saburosuke and Fujishima Takeji. In ...

Article

Japanese, 19th century, male.

Activec.1848-1867.

Born in Osaka.

Master engraver, illustrator. Prints.

Munehiro Hasegawa produced ukiyo-e (pic­tures of the ‘floating world’, the world of pleasure).

Article

Masato Naitō

[Iwakubo Kinemon; Kikō; Kyōsai]

(b Edo [now Tokyo], 1780; d Edo, 1850).

Japanese printmaker and book illustrator. He initially studied painting with Kanō Yōsen (1735–1808), the head of the Kobikichō branch of the Kanō school and okaeshi (official painter) to the Tokugawa shogunate. Together with Teisai Hokuba (1771–1844), Hokkei was one of Katsushika Hokusais best students (see Japan §X 3., (iii), (d)). He made his artistic debut in ukiyoe (‘pictures of the floating world’) circles c. 1800, producing illustrations for sharebon (comic novels, usually licentious), hanashibon (story books) and kyōkabon (books of ‘crazy verse’). His main period of activity, however, was in the 1820s and 30s. He continued to illustrate kyōka books, but his most outstanding works are kyōka surimono (‘printed objects’; deluxe prints). His representative piece from this period is his illustrated edition of Rokujuen’s [Ishikawa Masamochi] (1753–1830) kokkeibon (humorous tales of urban life), Hokuri jūniji (‘The twelve hours of the northern village’, a euphemism for the Yoshiwara pleasure quarter). Hokkei produced few ...

Article

Hokusai  

Japanese, 18th – 19th century, male.

Born September 1760, in Honjo Wari-Gesui, now Tokyo; died 1849.

Painter, print artist, illustrator, draughtsman. Figures, portraits, landscapes, seascapes.

While Hiroshige (1797-1858) is unanimously admired both in Japan and in the West, no Japanese artist has ever been so admired in the West and been regarded as so controversial in Japan as Hokusai. ‘The old man mad with painting’, to whom Edmond de Goncourt would pay so touching a tribute, left behind a corpus so monumental and so varied that wittingly or unwittingly no artist of his time would remain untouched by it, and his originality was so marked as to be intimidating, even offputting. Until he arrived, the Japanese print had concentrated on the female figure and portraits of actors, and had reached its peak at the end of the 18th century. With Hokusai, it found new life in a new field: landscape. ‘I was born at the age of 50,’ he would say, hinting at the long years when, rather like a pilgrim, he nurtured and refined his art until, as the 18th century drew to a close, it was ready to burst forth....

Article

Anne Burkus-Chasson

[Ch’en Hung-shou; zi Zhanghou; hao Lianzi, Laolian, after 1646 Huichi, Huiseng, Laochi]

(b Zhuji, Zhejiang Province, 1598 or 1599; d ?Shaoxing, Zhejiang Province, 1652).

Chinese painter, calligrapher, and designer of woodblock-prints. Chen’s innovative renditions of the human figure, in particular of gentlemen and women at leisure, were celebrated during his lifetime for their unusual, startling effect (see also China, People’s Republic of §V 3., (vii), (d)). Distorted features and exaggerated draperies, each precisely delineated and often artfully modeled with color, exemplify Chen’s interest in juxtaposing incongruent pictorial styles and genres. Yet the oddity of Chen’s mature work is variously interpreted. Some scholars point to the derivation of his style from forged, archaistic paintings, which flooded the art market during the 17th century; others, stressing the intersection between his painting and contemporary printed illustration, present Chen instead as an artist engaged in the media revolution of his time, who reinvented narrative and figural painting in the context of 17th-century habits of seeing. Besides human figures, Chen also painted bird-and-flower subjects and, to a lesser extent, landscapes. His contemporaries further acknowledged his skills as a poet and calligrapher....

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1898, in Tokyo; died 1972.

Painter, engraver, illustrator.

Shinsui Ito, who had no financial means of support, worked in his youth in a print works. However, from the age of 14 he took courses in painting, and soon began to participate in group artistic events. He is particularly known for his very realistic portraits of women, and he executed numerous engravings and illustrations....

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1942, in Tokyo.

Illustrator, print artist.

Kamiya lives and works in Tokyo. He was represented in the 1974–1975 Tokyo International Print Biennale. He also illustrates children’s books.

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1890; died 1967.

Painter, print artist, illustrator.

Kamoshita Choko was represented at the exhibition of Japanese art held at the Musée du Jeu de Paume in Paris in 1929. He illustrated children’s books and designed new ukiyo-e prints.

Article

Japanese, 19th century, male.

Born 1793, in Osaka; died 1860.

Print artist.

Kanenari was an author and illustrator, active sometime between 1810 and 1850.

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1933, in Tokyo.

Print artist, painter, illustrator.

Kano Mitsuo has no formal artistic training. While still young he developed an interest in poetry, especially French poetry, the work of Lautréamont, Rimbaud and Sade. At the same time, working as an assistant to a botanist, he became fascinated with the study of microbiomorphology and macro-organisms. His talent was discovered by the surrealist poet Shuzo Takiguchi....

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1895, in Yokohama; died 1972.

Engraver (wood), illustrator, painter, glass painter. Figures, urban landscapes, still-lifes.

First Thursday Society.

Kawakami had no formal training as an artist and always regarded himself as an amateur. However, he attended the studo of the engraver Kiyoshi Goda (...

Article

Keisai  

Japanese, 18th – 19th century, male.

Born 1761 or 1764, in Edo (now Tokyo); died 1824, in Edo.

Master engraver, illustrator, painter.

Ukiyo-e (pictures of the floating world).

Keisai was the son of a maker of tatami (straw mats), who studied the style of Korin (...

Article

Japanese, 18th century, male.

Active in Edo (now Tokyo).

Print artist.

Kiyoharu was a disciple of Kiyonobu I (1664-1729). A book illustrator, he also wrote humorous works and produced plates of beautiful women.