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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

Patrick Conner

(b Maidstone, Kent, April 10, 1767; d Maidstone, July 23, 1816).

English painter, engraver, draughtsman and museum official. The son of a coachbuilder, he was apprenticed to Julius Caesar Ibbetson before enrolling in 1784 at the Royal Academy Schools, London. In 1792 he accepted the post (previously declined by Ibbetson) of draughtsman to George, 1st Earl Macartney, on his embassy to China. As the embassy returned by inland waterway from Beijing to Canton, Alexander made detailed sketches of the Chinese hinterland—something achieved by no British artist previously and by very few subsequently. These sketches formed the basis for finished watercolours (e.g. Ping-tze Muen, the Western Gate of Peking, 1799; London, BM) and for numerous engravings by both himself and others. For over fifty years his images of China were widely borrowed by book illustrators and by interior decorators in search of exotic themes.

Alexander was also a keen student of British medieval antiquities, undertaking several tours in order to make drawings of churches and monuments; many of these were reproduced in the antiquarian publications of ...

Article

Ramón Vargas

(b Mexico City, Mar 29, 1915; d Mexico City, May 25, 1959).

Mexican architect, theorist, and writer, of Japanese descent. The son of a Japanese ambassador in Mexico, he studied philosophy, espousing neo-Kantianism and becoming politically a socialist. He became a supporter of Functionalism, with its emphasis on the social applications of architecture, and was a founder, with Enrique Yañez, of the Unión de Arquitectos Socialistas (1938), helping to draw up a socialist theory of architecture. He was one of the most active participants in the Unión and attempted to put his socialist theory into practice on two unexecuted projects in the same year: the building for the Confederación de Trabajadores de México and the Ciudad Obrera de México, both with Enrique Guerrero and Raúl Cacho. Later, when Mexico opted for a developmental policy, Arai became a standard-bearer for nationalism in architecture. He re-evaluated traditional building materials, such as tree trunks, bamboo, palm leaves, and lianas, using them in a plan for a country house that was adapted to the warm, damp climate of the Papaloapan region. The building of the Ciudad Universitaria, Mexico City, gave him his greatest architectural opportunity when he designed the Frontones (...

Article

Alan Powers

(Irving Jeffrey)

(b Haiphong, French Indo-China [now Vietnam], Oct 16, 1900; d Rodmersham, Kent, Nov 8, 1979).

English illustrator and author. From 1905 he grew up in England, becoming a professional artist in 1926 after part-time study at the Westminster School of Art, London. He became known as an illustrator of genre scenes in a variety of media, often with a comic Victorian flavour. He was best known for illustrated stories, the first of which, Little Tim and the Brave Sea-captain (Oxford, 1936), was followed by numerous imaginative and popular children’s books and by many other illustrated books. Baggage to the Enemy (London, 1941) reflected his appointment in 1940 as an Official War Artist, recording the German invasion of France, and the North African and Italian campaigns. His freelance career continued after the war with a steady production of illustrative and ephemeral work in an instantly recognizable style that relied on ink line and delicate washes.

The Young Ardizzone: An Autobiographical Fragment (London, 1970) Diary of a War Artist...

Article

Toshiaki Nagaya

(b Tokyo, July 7, 1918).

Japanese architect and writer . He graduated from the University of Tokyo in 1942 and in 1946–7 he worked in the office of Junzō Sakakura in Tokyo. After receiving a master’s degree from Harvard University, Cambridge, MA (1953), he worked in the office of Marcel Breuer in New York (1953–6). In 1956 he returned to Japan and opened his own office in Tokyo. One of Ashihara’s principal concerns was the use of logical structural systems to create flexible, integrated space within buildings. He developed the use of split levels or ‘skip’ floors to combine spaces of various sizes, as in the Chūō Koron building (1956), Tokyo, for which he was awarded the Architectural Institute of Japan prize in 1960. The Sony building (1966), Tokyo, was designed as a cubic spiral of skip floors, creating organic spatial continuity throughout the building with spaces that interrelate with each other and with their environment. A similar concept was used for the Japanese pavilion at Expo ’67 in Montreal, for which he received an award from the Ministry of Education. The continuity and flow of space between interior and exterior, and in the spaces between buildings, were also addressed, for example in the Komazawa Olympic Gymnasium (...

Article

Toshiaki Nagaya

(b Osaka, Sept 20, 1933).

Japanese architect and writer . After graduating in 1957 from the School of Architecture, Osaka University, he worked for three years as a designer for the Ministry of Postal Services in Tokyo and Osaka and then joined Junzō Sakakura Architect & Associates (1960–67). He established his own office in Tokyo in 1967. Azuma’s architecture is characterized by the expression of opposing elements such as individuality and collectivity, enclosure and openness, inside and outside etc. For example, his own house, Tower House (1967), Tokyo, expresses the idea of defensive living in the modern urban setting. Standing on a tiny plot of land in the heart of the city, it has a closed concrete exterior with no windows on the street elevation; this, however, is extended outwards to the city by a slanting parapet and overhanging roof-terrace acting as transitional elements between inside and out. Inside is an ingenious sequence of spaces expressing individuality in an area of traditionally designed houses. A prolific architect, Azuma produced designs with simple and clear-cut images: for instance, in the Seijin Nursery School (...

Article

Tamaki Maeda

[Fu Pao-shih; ming Fu Ruilin]

(b Xinyu, Jiangxi Province, Oct 5, 1904; d Nanjing, Sept 28, 1965).

Chinese painter, seal carver, and art historian. He was one of the foremost painters of guohua (literally “national painting”), who worked in the traditional medium of painting in East Asia, namely, ink and color on paper or silk. His work helped transform literati painting, an age-old artistic pursuit of the elite scholarly class, to an idiom of expression in tune with the aesthetic and social values of modern era.

Born into a humble family, Fu received a modest education in Nanchang. He later studied at the Imperial School of Fine Arts in Japan, and in 1935 became a faculty member at the National Central University in Nanjing. During the Sino-Japanese War (1937–1945), Fu fled to the hinterland, where he developed his mature style of painting—semi-abstract landscapes often combined with human elements—and earned considerable repute through exhibitions and publications. After the Communist takeover of China in 1949, Fu produced paintings inspired by poems by Mao Zedong and the Red Army, as well as those emphasizing the beauty of the land in China. He continued to serve in important positions in the art world, most notably, director of the Jiangsu Provincial Chinese Painting Institute....

Article

Basho  

Japanese, 17th century, male.

Born 1644, in Iga; died 1694.

Painter, poet.

Basho is one of Japan’s most celebrated haiku poets. He also studied suiboku painting (ink painting) with Marikawa Kyoroku.

Article

Bo Erdu  

Chinese, 17th century, male.

Active in the second half of the 17th century.

Painter, poet.

Bo Erdu was a Manchu and a friend of the painter Shitao.

Article

Masatomo Kawai

[Gyokukei]

(1348–c. 1420).

Japanese Zen monk, scholar, calligrapher, poet and painter. He began his training as a monk at Nanzenji in Kyoto, under Shun’oku Myōha, the nephew and disciple of Musō Sōseki, one of the leading Zen prelates of the Muromachi period (1333–1568). His other teachers included the Zen recluse Shakushitsu Genkō and Gidō Shūshin, under whom he studied literature. A trusted adviser of the fourth Ashikaga shogun, Yoshimochi, Gyokuen was appointed to the prestigious abbacies of Kenninji (c. 1409) and Nanzenji (1413) in Kyoto. His true wish, however, was to retire from the world, and in 1420, after a disagreement with Yoshimochi, he left Kyoto to lead a life of seclusion. An accomplished poet, Gyokuen also brushed colophons on many shigajiku (poem-painting scrolls) of the period, including Josetsu’s Catching a Catfish with a Gourd (c. 1413–15; Kyoto, Myōshinji). His own painting, which shows the influence of the mid-14th-century Chinese priest–painter Xue Chuang and of Tesshū Tokusai, strongly reflects his literary disposition. He is especially well known for his subdued monochrome ink paintings of orchids (emblems of moral virtue), 30 of which have survived (...

Article

Stephen Addiss

[Kameda Chōkō; Kameda Hōsai]

(b Edo [now Tokyo], 1752; d Edo, 1826).

Japanese painter, poet, calligrapher and book illustrator. The son of an Edo merchant, he studied calligraphy from a very early age under the noted Chinese-style calligrapher Mitsui Shinna (1700–82). He also received a Confucian education, unusual at that time for a merchant’s son. From about 1765 to 1774 Bōsai trained under Inoue Kinga (1732–84), an influential Confucian scholar of eclectic doctrines as well as a painter and calligrapher, at the Seijūkan, a private academy near Yokohama. Bōsai opened a Confucian academy in Edo in 1774. In 1790, however, the Tokugawa shogunate issued an edict aimed at curtailing the popularity of such schools as Bōsai’s, where students were encouraged to develop their own moral philosophy rather than accept the government-sponsored Confucianism of the Chinese Song-period (ad 960–1279) philosopher Zhu Xi. Bōsai gradually lost his pupils and in 1797 closed his school.

Bōsai’s artistic activity increased from ...

Article

Hollis Goodall-Cristante

[ Buson ; Sha’in ; Shunsei ; Taniguchi Noriyuki ; Yahantei ]

(b Kema, Osaka, 1716; d Kyoto, 1783).

Japanese painter and poet . He was a member of the second generation of literati painters in Japan. He and his contemporary Ike Taiga ( see Ike family §(1) ) absorbed and transformed the Chinese scholar–amateur style into a Japanese idiom ( Nanga or Bunjinga; see Japan §VI 4., (vi), (d) ).

Buson left Kema in 1735 for Edo (now Tokyo), where he studied haiku poetry under Uchida Senzan and, from 1737, under Hayano Hajin (1677–1742). His earliest known work was an illustration of a woman reading a letter (1737; see Suzuki, p. 157) for a haiku anthology. When Hajin died, Buson left Edo and for the next ten years he lived and travelled in the northern Shimosa–Kantō provinces (now Ibaraki Prefect.), concentrating on the study of haiku but supporting himself by painting. His works of this period were experimental, drawing both on the style of the Kanō school...

Article

Chinese, 17th century, male.

Born 1601, in Haining (Zhejiang); died 1677.

Painter, historian.

Cha Jizuo was an historian who also painted landscapes in the style of Huang Gongwang.

Article

(b Busan, March 4, 1951; d New York, Nov 5, 1982).

Korean artist and writer active in the USA. Cha was born and raised in Busan, Korea, moving to Hawaii with her parents in the mid-1960s, and then later to San Francisco. Trained in French from early adolescence, she studied comparative literature at the University of California, Berkeley, including the works of Stéphane Mallarmé. As part of her theoretical studies, Cha also majored in visual art, first concentrating on ceramics and then moving to performance-based work under the tutelage of James Melchert (b 1930). After graduating in both disciplines in 1973 and 1975 respectively, Cha continued her studies in visual art at the University of California, Berkeley, receiving an MFA in 1978. During this time, she studied abroad in Paris at the Centre d’Etudes Américain du Cinéma in 1976, working with psychoanalytic theorists such as Christian Metz and Raymond Bellour. Works created during this time were based on symbols, the manipulation of language via experimentation with font, scale and the placement of words, as well as cinematic devices such as the fade....

Article

Celia Carrington Riely

[Ch’en Chi-ju; zi Zhongshun; hao Meigong, Meidaoren, Migong]

(b Huating, Jiangsu Province [modern Songjiang, Shanghai Municipality], 16 Dec 1558; d 19 Oct 1639). Chinese editor, writer, calligrapher and painter. He exemplified the literati ideal of the accomplished gentleman–scholar who rejected the sordid world of political involvement and devoted himself to a life of literary, artistic and philosophical pursuit. At the age of 28, having passed the prefectural examination, the first important step leading to a career in government office, Chen renounced official life in a dramatic gesture, by burning his Confucian cap and gown. Thereafter he lived at country retreats at Kunshan and then Mt She, near Huating in Jiangsu Province: entertaining guests; writing and editing; composing the poems, prefaces, epitaphs and biographies for which he was in constant demand; and travelling to places of scenic beauty in the company of friends.

Chen followed the lead of his close friend Dong Qichang, the foremost painter, calligrapher and connoisseur of the late Ming period (...

Article

Chinese, 17th century, male.

Activec.1620-1650.

Poet, calligrapher, painter. Flowers.

Chen Yuansu specialised in painting orchids.

Stockholm (Nationalmus.): Clump of Flowers growing on Plant (signed and dated 1630, on gold-flecked paper)

Article

Chinese, 20th century, male.

Born 1903; died 1977.

Painter, calligrapher, writer, scholar.

Chiang Yee (Jiang Yi) moved to England in 1933, where he became something of a celebrity on account of his Silent Traveller books. These included The Silent Traveller in London, a travelogue of London in the 1930s, which includes examples of his sketches and calligraphy, and ...

Article

Kōzō Sasaki

[Tanomura Kōzō; Chikuden; Chikuden Rōho; Chikuden Sonmin; Kujō Senshi]

(b Takeda, Bungo Prov. [now Ōita Prefect.], Kyushu, 1777; d Osaka, 1835).

Japanese poet, painter and theorist. He was born into a family of physicians in service to the Oka clan of Bungo Province. He first studied medicine, but later became an instructor in Confucian studies at the clan school, the Yūgakukan. In 1801–2 Chikuden studied the verse of China’s Song period (960–1279) in Edo (now Tokyo). During this time he was also painting landscapes in the style of Dong Qichang, a painter of the Ming period (1368–1644). From 1805 to 1807 he continued his literary training in Kyoto, where he befriended Uragami Gyokudō and Okada Beisanjin, who were exponents of literati painting (Bunjinga or Nanga; see Japan §VI 4., (vi), (d)), and from this time he was determined to establish himself as a literati poet and painter.

Chikuden continued painting after his arrival in Kyoto, and his style became more experimental as a result of his contact both with Japanese painters who copied Chinese painting and woodblock-printed books and with original works by Chinese artists. He executed portraits of beautiful women (...

Article

[ho Ch’usa, among others]

(b Yesan, Ch’ungch’ŏng Province, 1786; d Kwach’on, Kyŏnggi Province, 1856).

Korean calligrapher, painter, scholar and poet. He was also a lay Buddhist. Born into a family related by marriage to the imperial household, from an early age he showed his talent for calligraphy, studying with Pak Che-ga. Kim had an extremely successful civil service career before being exiled in 1840 and again in 1848.

In 1809 he accompanied his father on a mission to China and went to Beijing, where he met such eminent scholars as Wen Fanggang (1733–1818) and Ruan Yuan. The scholarship of the Qing period (1644–1911), in particular the northern stele school of calligraphy (see China, People’s Republic of §IV 2., (vii), (b)), which chose as its calligraphic models the stelae of the Han (206 bcad 220) and Northern Wei (ad 386–534) dynasties, made a deep impression on Kim. His own style of calligraphy was characterized by vigorous strokes with a strong contrast between thick and thin lines. This style, known as the Ch’usa (i.e. Kim Chŏng-hŭi) style, was highly influential in Korea and well respected in China (...

Article

Hiroyuki Suzuki

(b London, Sept 28, 1852; d Tokyo, 1920).

English architect, active in Japan. He was articled to Roger Thomas Smith and then entered the office of William Burges. In 1876 he was awarded the Soane Medallion by the RIBA. In the next year he was appointed the first professor of architecture at the Imperial College of Engineering (now Tokyo University) in Japan, in which role he taught every aspect of architecture and building construction. During this period he was also active as an architect, designing such buildings as the Tokyo Imperial Museum (1877–80; now Tokyo National Museum) and a national banqueting house, Rokumeikan (Deer Cry Pavilion), for the Ministry of Public Works. After leaving his academic and governmental posts, Conder went into private practice and designed many residences, including the Iwasaki residence in Kayacho (1896; see Japan, §III, 5), the Shimazu residence (1915) and the Furukawa residence (1917). His style gradually changed from Gothic to more classical. He is often called the father of Western architecture in Japan, not only on account of his designs but also because of his role in establishing the Western method of architectural higher ...