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date: 17 October 2019

Aoki Shigerulocked

  • J. Thomas Rimer

Extract

(b Kurume, Kyushu, 1882; d Fukuoka, Kyushu, 1911) Japanese painter. Although his family disapproved of his early interest in Western-style art (Yōga; see Japan, §VI, 5, (iv)), he left home at 17 to pursue his studies in Tokyo, first with Koyama Shōtarō (1857–1916), a pupil of Antonio Fontanesi, an Italian painter who taught at the Kōbu Bijutsu Gakkō (Technical Art School) from 1877 to 1879, and then with Seiki Kuroda at the Tōkyō Bijutsu Gakkō (Tokyo Art School; now Tokyo University of Fine Arts and Music). Aoki finished his studies in 1904. A brilliant, rather eccentric young man, he showed precocious talent and while still a student exhibited his work with Kuroda’s prestigious association of Western-style painters, the Hakubakai (White Horse Society), established in 1896.

Aoki showed a strong literary bent, and his interest in Japanese, Christian and Indian mythology led him to develop a romantic style, often recalling the British Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. A number of his most important paintings dealing with mythological and related subjects, among them the ...

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