Japanese Arts Part 6

The traditional woodcut art could no longer at the beginning of the Meiji period to build on the previous quality. Notable artists in this field were Tsukioka Yoshitoshi (* 1839, † 1892) and Kobayashi Kiyochika (* 1847, † 1915). In 1915 the Shin-Hanga (“new woodcut”) was developed, the most prominent representatives of which were trained in Nihonga painting (including Itō Shinsui, * 1898, † 1972; Kawase Hasui, * 1883, † 1957). From 1919–45 the »Society for Creative Printmaking« (»sōsaku hanga«) was active, its artists (Onchi Kōshirō, * 1891, † 1955; Hiratsuka Un’ichi, * 1895, † 1997; among other things) not only provided the draft, but also took care of printing and distribution.

The architecture was influenced by historicism, Art Nouveau and international style, there was a lively exchange between Western and Japanese architects: the British architect Josiah Conder (* 1852, † 1920), in Tokyo since 1877, became the first architecture teacher at the Imperial University in Tokyo; The Berlin architects Ende & Böckmann established the Ministry of Justice in 1895 and the National Court of Justice in 1896; F. L. Wright built the Hotel Imperial in Tokyo in 1916-22 (destroyed in 1968). Japanese architects of historicism were among others. Katayama Tokuma (* 1853, † 1917; Crown Prince Palace, 1895–1909) and Tatsuno Kingo (* 1854, † 1917; Central Station, Tokyo, 1911-14); In 1920 students from the University of Tokyo formed a secession (Bunriha Kenchikukai): members were, inter alia. Yamada Mamoru (* 1894, † 1966) and Horiguchi Sutemi (* 1895, † 1984), who also provided expressionist designs. After 1930 an independent modern age developed: representatives are Yoshida Tetsurō (* 1894, † 1956; Central Post Office, Tokyo, 1934, and Ōsaka, 1939), Yamaguchi Bunzō (Gropius student), J. Sakakura (student of Le Corbusier) and Murano Tōgo. Horiguchi Sutemi, Murano Tōgo and Yamaguchi Bunzō, influenced by Bruno Taut, who worked in Japan from 1933–36, continued to develop traditional designs as well as modern ones.

Modern and present

(since 1945)

Modern art since 1945 and the present is shaped by different styles. Artists’ associations that existed before the Second World War were revived or renewed. “Classical” Nihonga artists (Yokoyama Taikan; Uemura Shōen, Kaburagi Kiyotaka, * 1878, † 1972; Itō Shinsui) continued to work. Higashiyama Kai’i (* 1908, † 1999) and Hirayama Ikuo (* 1930, † 2009) achieved international recognition with their large-scale ink paintings. In contrast to this more traditional painting In close contact with contemporary art in the USA and Europe, an internationally oriented avant-garde developed. On the other hand go z. For example, the happenings in the West are based on suggestions from Japan, especially the Gutai group (concrete art) founded by J. Yoshihara in 1954.

In 1957, Kikuhata Mokuma (* 1935, † 2020) founded the Kyūshū School, one of the most radical anti-art groups. stood out for their destructive happenings. From the late 1960s and 1970s, v. a. Monoha (»School of Things«), founded in 1968, is worth mentioning. The artists of this loosely organized group were interested in the topics of perception, nature and art. They related on the one hand to East Asian metaphysics and on the other hand to contemporary European philosophy from M. Heidegger to M. Merleau-Ponty and strove for an autonomous art beyond modernism. Other prominent representatives were the Korean Lee Ufan, who lives in Japan as well Sekine Nobuo (* 1942, † 2019).

According to businesscarriers, the concept art and performance artist Yoko Ono, the painter and happening artist Yayoi Kusama and the concept art artist On Kawara have been active in Japan and the USA since the 1960s. The art of the 1980s and 1990s asserted an independent position between tradition and avant-garde, Asian sensitivity and Western formal language. Artists such as Yae Asano (* 1914, † 1996), Satoko Masuda (* 1961) and Tomoharu Murakami (* 1938) develop abstract painting in the sense of meditative calligraphy.

The meditative traditions of Zen also come into play in sculpture and plastic. For example, the individual painted objects reminiscent of Japanese vases by Katsuhito Nishikawa (* 1949), the seemingly weightless objects by Keiji Uematsu (* 1947)and the barren rooms bathed in blue light by K. Katase. The wood sculptors often stage their works expansively – besides Kazuo Kenmochi (* 1951), Shirō Matsui (* 1960), Shigeo Toya (* 1947), Kimio Tsuchiya (* 1955), Chuichi Fujii (* 1941) is Tadashi Kawamata (* 1953) with its architecture-related projects. Toshikatsu Endō (* 1950) uses the four elements fire, earth, water and air to create symbols against environmental degradation. Isamu Wakabayashi (* 1936, † 2003), Kishio Suga (* 1944) and Noe Aoki (* 1958) have emerged as metal and stone sculptors, who address the interaction between nature and technology in their work. Katsura Funakoshi (* 1951) deals with everyday people in his poetically painted figures and half-figures (often made of wood). Since the 1990s, v. a. Yasuhiro Suda (* 1969) with subtle sculptures of flowers and grass.

The artists Yasumasa Morimura (* 1951), Shinro Ōtake (* 1955) and Shirō Matsui (* 1960) ask themselves more western-oriented aesthetic questions. Takashi Murakami (* 1962), Yoshitomo Nara (* 1959) and Mariko Mori (* 1967) refer to the manga phenomenon in their paintings, sculptures and video installations and are among the internationally successful pop art artists.

Japanese Arts 6