Views of Contemporary Japanese Printmaking
The printing of a wooden block first appeared in the 8th century and woodblock prints production never stopped since, initially depicting religious and then secular themes in the 17th century. The works exhibited represent this much alive printmaking tradition. They are significant large-scale works, a result, in most of the cases, of great and diverse inspiration.
The works are produced as a result of various techniques. Some remain committed to traditional colour woodblock printing, as well as to old globally known printing techniques (printing on paper of a metal plate rusted by salt and vinegar, rubbing the embossed paper with colours). Many others adopted techniques from the West, traditional as well as later ones. This way works exhibited include those produced through the techniques of drypoint, etching, aquatint, copper etching “ink and sugar”, English manner/mezzotinto, lithography, screen print, even techniques of digital printmaking.
The range of the themes chosen is equally rich. Figurative or non-figurative printmaking reflects the world and concerns of the contemporary artists. Several works either preserve the traditional close bond Japanese printmakers have with nature or seem directly linked to current challenges and questions that trouble society and humans. Others adopt minimalism or an abundance of detail. The first project an excellent use of single colour printmaking (with the use of black ink), while the latter propose a colour explosion. All works present the same printing quality and wonderful choice of quality paper by the printmakers.
Artists who exhibit their works include: Hayashi ASUMI, Haruko CHO, Tomomi FURUKAWA / Eiichi HASEGAWA, Toshiko HISHIDA, Manami ITO, Ryo KAJITANI, Yuki KASHIWAGI, Yuki NAGASHIMA, Misaki OGURO, Yusuke OKAMURA, Miyuki OKAWA, Tomiyuki SAKUTA, Takumi SATO, Fumiko SUZUKI, Chihiro TAKI, Kayoko TATSUBORI-SAKAMOTO, Yoshie UCHIDA, Sanae YAMAMOTO, Tokida YASUYOSHI and Katsutoshi YUASA.