Modern Japanese Prints

This selection of wood-block prints and serigraphs, intaglios and lithographs reflects the contemporary expression of the ancient tradition of Japanese printmaking.

Printing by the traditional Japanese wood-block technique began in the 17th century. Over the past twenty years, a print boom, due in part to modern technology, has been experienced in Japan. These contemporary prints, made by various photographic techniques, lithography and silk-screening, quickly gained popularity at least in part because multiple copies were readily available.

In modern wood-block printing, the artist himself cuts the block and prints a limited edition. A second edition or re-cutting of the block is rare. Among the printmakers using contemporary wood-block gradation printing are Reika Twami, who creates embossed compositions, and Toshi Yoshida, whose prints depict arctic landscapes.

Several intaglios are part of the exhibit, including Ryohei Tanaka's finely detailed compositions of houses and rooftops and Shogo Okamoto's trees. This display also includes modern serigraphs in bold colors by Tatsuo Matsubara and metallic colored, three-dimensional lithographs by Kiyoko Kobayashi.