Traces the life and career of the great nineteenth-century Japanese printmaker, looks at a variety of his woodblock prints, and discusses their historical background
"THE SPLENDID DECADENT. New York, 1985. 4to. 1st edition. Brwon cloth boards are unmarked, text is clean throughout. DJ is bright, with minor chipping at bottom of spine.
Hokusai is perhaps the Asian artist best known in the West. His influence has extended from the Impressionists to later modern art and even to commercial design. A few of his works are so frequently reproduced that they are almost as familiar as the face of the Mona Lisa. Yet the "Great Wave" and the "Red Fuji" from the Thirty-six views of Mt. Fuji represent only a tiny fraction of Hokusai's output. The pages of the Sketches, with their teeming humanity and their boundless interest in the details of everyday life, give only a small idea of his true scope. Hokusai's life was characterized by a prodigious energy and productivity that continued to the end of his ninth decade; his output comprises a correspondingly broad variety of genres and styles. Despite this, it is still not sufficiently realized just how great is the range, and how many masterpieces it includes.
The aim of this work is to present a more balanced picture of Hokusai's achievement, a selection ranging over the whole oeuvre that will give some idea of the strength, the delicacy, and the fabulous inventive powers of this truly universal genius of the ukiyo-e.
The last great master of the Japanese woodblock was Utagawa Hiroshige (1797-1858). In the Japan of his day, Hiroshige's landscape prints fostered a new and far-reaching appreciation for nature in art. In the West, his work influenced such artists as Whistler, Cezanne, and Gauguin.
Born in the shogun's capital of Edo (now Tokyo), Hiroshige lost his parents at a young age. Even so, he relinquished the security of his hereditary position as fire warden, and soon after began to study the art of the woodblock (ukiyo-e) under Utagawa Toyohiro. Some seven or eight years later the maturing Hiroshige made his debut with an impressive set of illustrations for a volume of comic verses. Over the next twelve years or so, he went on to produce prints of Kabuki actors, historical figures, and beautiful women.
The first work to demonstrate Hiroshige's genius in landscape was a series of ten prints on famous scenic spots in Edo, which was produced around 1831. The following year the artist managed to join an official procession to Kyoto, and in his travels along the great thoroughfare between Edo and Kyoto known as the Tokaido he found inspiration for his first masterpiece. The resultant series, "Fifty-three Stages of the Tokaido," secured his position as a landscape artist and provided him with the calling that was to occupy the rest of his life.
Hiroshige's work not only altered the Japanese conception of nature and influenced painters the world over, but earned him a place among the great artists of the world. Hiroshige documents the mastery of this revered artist and presents his most famous prints in a large, deluxe format that makes abundantly clear Hiroshige's prodigious talent.
The British painter Emma Stibbon (born 1962) is fascinated by environments in flux. Her work often explores the impact of natural forces: the shifting tectonic plates, volcanic activity and powerful glaciers that shape and transform the Earth's surface. Stibbon has accompanied research expeditions in the Arctic and Antarctic Oceans, lived and worked in Hawai'i and has made several visits to Norway, Iceland and Stromboli, off the coast of northern Sicily.Fire and Ice presents the sketches she made during her travels. They have the immediacy of work made at speed using materials to hand, such as volcanic ash, produced in difficult circumstances and often frozen conditions. The book is introduced by the artist, who, informed by her discussions with vulcanologists and glaciologists, explains why she is drawn to depict nature's extremes.
This volume includes full-color reproductions of drawings and woodblock prints by Japan's most beloved artist. These landscapes-including his famous views of Mount Fuji- portraits of lovers and kabuki actors, nature and animal illustrations, as well as scenes of daily life in eighteenth and nineteenth-century Japan reveal the artist's genius for rendering a wide variety of subjects. Matthi Forrer discusses in his essay Hokusai's life and lasting popularity while placing his work within the context of Japanese society and the work of his contemporaries.
Japanese woodblock prints, or ukiyo-e, are the most recognizable Japanese art form. Their massive popularity has spread from Japan to be embraced by a worldwide audience. Covering the period from the beginning of the Japanese woodblock print in the 1680s until the year 1900, Japanese Woodblock Prints provides a detailed survey of all the famous ukiyo-e artists, along with over 500 full-color prints.Unlike previous examinations of this art form, Japanese Woodblock Prints includes detailed histories of the publishers of woodblock prints--who were often the driving force determining which prints, and therefore which artists, would make it into mass circulation for a chance at critical and popular success. Invaluable as a guide for ukiyo-e enthusiasts looking for detailed information about their favorite Japanese woodblock print artists and prints, it is also an ideal introduction for newcomers to the world of the woodblock print. This lavishly illustrated book will be a valued addition to the libraries of scholars, as well as the general art enthusiast.
Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944) was a Russian pioneer of abstract painting whose work has influenced generations of artists. His Sounds (Kl nge) of 1912 is one of the earliest, most beautiful examples of a 20th-century artist's book. Its "sound poems" are alternately narrative and expressive, witty and simple in form. They treat questions of space, color, physical design, and the act of seeing in a world that offers multiple and often contradictory possibilities. The woodcut illustrations that accompany the poems range from representational designs to abstract vignettes. In its fusion of image and word, Sounds epitomizes the artist's move toward abstraction and his aspiration to a synthesis of the arts. This updated edition of Sounds includes all of the book's poems in English and German and its woodcuts, twelve of which appear in color for greater fidelity to the original. The translator's introduction offers close formal examination of the poems and situates Sounds in the context of Kandinsky's oeuvre. Although it was prized by prominent 20th-century artists, Sounds is one of the least known of Kandinsky's major writings, and this remains the most authoritative English version.
The art of Japanese woodblock printing, known as ukiyo-e ("pictures of the floating world"), reflects the rich history and way of life in Japan hundreds of years ago. Ukiyo-e: The Art of the Japanese Print takes a thematic approach to this iconic Japanese art form, considering prints by subject matter: geisha and courtesans, kabuki actors, sumo wrestlers, erotica, nature, historical subjects and even images of foreigners in Japan.An artist himself, author Frederick Harris--a well-known American collector who lived in Japan for 50 years--pays special attention to the methods and materials employed in Japanese printmaking. The book traces the evolution of ukiyo-e from its origins in metropolitan Edo (Tokyo) art culture as black and white illustrations, to delicate two-color prints and multicolored designs. Advice to admirers on how to collect, care for, view and buy Japanese ukiyo-e woodblock prints rounds out this book of charming, carefully selected prints.
" Hubbard was a gifted writer, but during his lifetime he was better known as an artist. He painted in both oil and watercolor, but over the years he also cut and printed approximately 170 woodcuts. It was in this medium that his potential as an artist was most full realized."