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Yasuyoshi Saito

[Sugita, Hideo]

(b Miyazaki Prefect., April 28, 1911; d Tokyo, March 10, 1960).

Japanese photographer, painter, printmaker and critic. In 1925 he entered the department of yōga (Western-style painting) at the Japanese School of Art in Tokyo. In 1926 he began writing art criticism and in 1927 he left the School, going on in 1930 to study at the School of Oriental Photography, Tokyo. In 1934 he returned to Miyazaki and studied Esperanto, going back two years later to Tokyo; thereafter he rejected his real name of Hideo Sugita in favour of his pseudonym, which was suggested by Saburō Hasegawa. His first exhibition, a one-man show of photograms (Tokyo, 1936), was based on drawings that used photographic paper. His collection of photograms, Nemuri no riyū, was also published in 1936. In 1937 he was a founder-member of the Jiyū Bijutsuka Kyōkai (Independent Art Society) and in Osaka, of the Demokurāto Bijutsuka Kyōkai (Democratic Art Society); from then on he produced etchings, also making lithographs from ...


Lu Xun  

Eugene Yuejin Wang

[Lu Hsün; Chou Shu-jen; Zhou Shuren]

(b Shaoxing, Zhejiang Province, Sept 25, 1881; d Shanghai, Oct 19, 1936).

Chinese woodcut-printmaker, writer and critic. Already in childhood his imagination was caught by popular fiction illustrations, which were to resurface in his later writing. His sojourn in Japan (1902–9) was a turning-point, convincing him that literature and art rather than medicine made a nation healthy. From 1912 to 1926 he was employed in the Ministry of Education in Beijing, supervising and coordinating art-related affairs. For the next year he taught at Xiamen University in Fujian Province; later he chaired the Department of Literature at Sun Yat-sen (Zhongshan) University, Guangzhou (Canton). The last ten years (1927–36) of Lu’s life in Shanghai were the most productive in terms of publication.

Lu was an anti-formalist. He believed that artists fulfil a Messianic role in expressing the collective soul. In Ni bobu meishu yijianshu (‘Views on the promulgation of fine arts’; 1913), one of the first modern Chinese art manifestos, Lu Xun boldly attempted a new definition of art, distinguishing it from relics and rarities and emphasizing its conceptual base (‘no art without thought’). The chief virtue he saw in Western art was the primacy of social urgency, and he ardently commended to a Chinese audience the works of such artists as Käthe Kollwitz and Carl Meffert (...