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Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1900, in Tokyo.

Painter.

Kongo Abe spent time in France when Surrealism was emerging. The movement had a great influence on him and he introduced Surrealist ideas to Japan on his return.

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1913, in Niigata.

Painter.

Nobuya Abe was self-taught. He was one of the founders of the Bunka Kyokai (Art Culture Association). Although traditional in origin, his painting evolved into informal abstraction. His work has been represented in numerous exhibitions throughout the world, including the São Paulo Biennale in ...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1877; died 1956.

Painter.

In the exhibition of Japanese art organised by the Jeu de Paume Museum in Paris in 1929, Shunpo Abe’s work was included in the entitled Contemporary Classical School rather than the traditional Japanese painting section.

Article

Margaret Medley

(b London, June 11, 1914; d Pembury, Kent, July 31, 1983).

English diplomat, collector and art historian. In 1947, as a member of the British Diplomatic Service, he was posted to Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, then the capital of the Nationalist Chinese government. He became interested in Chinese art and history and began a collection of porcelain, furniture and textiles at a time of political and economic uncertainty, when Chinese collectors were forced to sell. When he moved to the British embassy in Beijing in 1954 he continued his research into Chinese ceramic history with the help of specialists from the Palace Museum. In 1963 he became British ambassador to the Philippines and was largely responsible for organizing the Manila Trade Pottery Seminar (1968), to which he also contributed five of the nine discussion monographs. From 1972 to 1974, as British ambassador to China, he played an important part in promoting the Chinese archaeological exhibition The Genius of China, held in London at the Royal Academy in ...

Article

Ado  

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Active in France since 1962.

Born 23 December 1936, in Tokyo; died 1994, in Paris.

Painter, screen printer.

Ado was the son of Sato Kei. In 1960 he graduated from Keio University, Tokyo, majoring in the history of aesthetics. He went to Paris in ...

Article

T. I. Zeymal’

Buddhist monastery of the 7th century ad to first half of the 8th, in the valley of the Vakhsh River, 12 km east of Kurgan-Tyube, southern Tajikistan. During this early medieval period it belonged to Vakhsh (U-sha in Chinese sources), one of the 27 domains of Tokharistan. Excavations between 1960 and 1975 by the Academy of Sciences, Tajikistan, and the Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg, exposed the entire site; most of the finds are on loan to the Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg. The buildings, which covered an area of 100×50 m, were constructed of mud-bricks (c. 490×250×110 mm) and rammed earth, with walls surviving to a height of 5.5 to 6.0 m. The site comprised two square complexes linked by an enfilade of three rooms (see fig. (a)). The south-eastern complex or monastery (b) had domed cells (c) for monks, a hall or refectory (d), service quarters, store-rooms and a small sanctuary (e). An open courtyard in the centre had a fired brick path across it, linking the enfilade to the sanctuary. A corridor around the perimeter of the courtyard was divided into four right-angled sections by a deep iwan, or vestibule, in the middle of each side. One of these vestibules led into the sanctuary, the second into the meeting-hall, the third into the enfilade and the fourth to the monastery exit (j) and also on to a vaulted ramp (k) that originally gave access to the roof and the now lost second storey....

Article

Agano  

Richard L. Wilson

Japanese region in Buzen Province (now part of Fukuoka Prefect.), northern Kyushu, where stonewares were manufactured at various sites from c. 1600 (see also Japan, §IX, 3, (i), (d)).

The first potter to make Agano ware was the Korean master Chon’gye (Jap. Sonkai; 1576–1654). Deported to Kyushu during one of the Japanese invasions of Korea in 1592 and 1597, he entered the service of Hosokawa Tadaoki (1563–1645), the newly appointed governor of Buzen. On the completion of Tadaoki’s fortress at Kokura (now Kitakyushu), Chon’gye built the Saienba kiln, probably within the castle precincts. A site thought to be Saienba was found beneath Myōkōji, the temple that replaced the castle in 1679, and excavations took place between 1979 and 1983. Sherds of both tea ceremony and everyday wares have been found there; they have transparent glazes made with a wood-ash flux, opaque glazes made with a straw-ash flux or brown-black glazes pigmented with iron oxide. Inscriptions on surviving pieces and entries in contemporary diaries indicate that these early products were also called Buzen or Kokura ware. After a few years the Saienba kiln closed, and ...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Painter.

Agikuchi exhibited two paintings at the 1933 Salon des Tuileries in Paris.

Article

Chinese, 20th – 21st century, male.

Active in China and the United States.

Born 18 May 1957, in Beijing, China.

Artist, architect, designer, curator, publisher, activist.

After spending most of his childhood in the provinces of China, Ai Weiwei moved to Beijing in the mid-1970s to attend the city’s film academy. While there, he co-founded the first of the loose collectives of pro-democracy artists to emerge in the city, known as the Stars Group (...

Article

Ai Xuan  

Chinese, 11th century, male.

Born in Nanjing.

Painter. Flowers, animals.

Ai Xuan specialised in flowers and birds and was a member of the academy of painting during the reign of Emperor Shenzong (1068-1085).

Beijing (NM): Aubergines and Cabbages (signed work)

Article

Ai Xuan  

Chinese, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1947, in Jinhua (Zhejiang).

Painter. Scenes with figures, figures, landscapes.

Ai Xuan was the son of the poet Ai Qing and grew up in a cultured environment, which left its stamp on him. He began his artistic studies at the central preparatory school of fine arts in Beijing in ...

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 24 June 1907, in Hiroshima Prefecture; died 19 January 1946, in Shanghai.

Painter. Figures.

When Ai Mitsu enrolled at the Tensai school of fine arts (Tensai Gajuku) in Osaka in 1923 he took the name Aikawa Mitsuro, from which he derived his artist name Ai Mitsu. In ...

Article

Michael Spens

(b Tokyo, June 5, 1937).

Japanese architect, teacher and writer. He graduated from Waseda University, Tokyo, in 1960 and obtained his MArch in 1966 and DEng in 1971. He began teaching architecture at Shibaura Institute of Technology in 1962, becoming a lecturer in engineering there in 1966 and subsequently assistant professor (1973) and professor (1976). In 1967 he opened his own office in Tokyo. A founding member of the counter-Metabolist group Architext (1971), Aida was one of the New Wave of avant-garde Japanese architects, expressing his theories in both buildings and writings. His journal articles clearly state his desire to question—if not overthrow—orthodox Modernist ideas of rationality, order and suitability of form to function. He likened architectural design to an intellectual game, and he was one of the first to equate deconstruction with the art of construction, for example in his Artist’s House (1967), Kunitachi, Tokyo, in which all the elements have arbitrary relationships with each other. In other buildings he focused on the creation of architectural experiences that reflect immediate events. In the Nirvana House (...

Article

Aigai  

Japanese, 19th century, male.

Born 1796, in Shimotsuke; died 1843.

Painter. Landscapes.

Nanga School.

After studying under Buncho (1763-1840) Aigai travelled through Japan. He settled in Kyoto but would later move to Edo (Tokyo) which became his preferred domicile. He was greatly influenced by Yi Fukyu and Ike no Taiga and mainly painted landscapes....

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1939, in Tokyo.

Print artist, painter, draughtsman, collage artist.

Aigasa Masayoshi graduated from the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music in 1962 and has been a member of the Japan Print Association since 1969. Aigasa’s style, which derives from fantasy art, is characterised by meticulous drawing. His series ...

Article

Aimi  

Japanese, 9th – 10th century, male.

Active in Kyoto 9th-10th century.

Painter. Religious subjects.

Aimi was the son and pupil of Kose no Kanaoka, the founder of the Kose school, and a member of the imperial bureau of painting. Like his father he painted mainly Buddhist subjects as well as imaginary scenes....

Article

Ainu  

Hans Dieter Ölschleger

[Emishi; Ezo; Mishihase]

Peoples who once lived in northern Japan and are now restricted to the islands of Hokkaido (Japan), southern Sakhalin and the Kuril chain. The Ainu live in an area that has been influenced by Chinese, Siberian and especially Japanese culture. Until the 17th century, when the Ainu began to practise small-scale agriculture in south-western Hokkaido, they subsisted by fishing and hunter–gathering. Although the gradual Japanese colonization of Hokkaido had almost eradicated Ainu culture by the early 20th century, the post-war period has witnessed a revival of Ainu culture and language.

Ainu art is characterized by the preponderance of geometric designs. Some have parallels in Japan proper, while others show similarities with motifs found in the art of the Gilyaks, their northern neighbours on Sakhalin, of the Ostyaks and Samoyeds of northern Siberia and even of the peoples of the north-west coast of North America. Human and animal motifs are extremely rare and restricted to the decoration of libation ...

Article

Aiseki  

Japanese, 19th century, male.

Active at the beginning of the 19th century.

Born probably 1837, in Kishu.

Painter. Landscapes.

Nanga School.

Aiseki was a pupil of Kaiseki.

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born in Japan.

Calligrapher.

Untei Akaba took part in the São Paulo Biennale in 1961.

Article

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1904, in Okayama.

Painter. Animals.

Sanei Akabori was a member of the Japan Art Society.