Ogata Gekko and Japanese art
Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
Ogata Gekkō (1859-1920) was born at a time of monumental changes in Japan. He had few options but to grow up quickly after his father became bankrupt.
In the first art piece, the bamboo depictions hold a slight mystery – with the fade in the background. Hence, despite the simplicity of the theme, it works a treat.
In contrast, the art piece above is more complex. This concerns the delightful flowers of autumn and two ladies and a child – who are dressed elegantly. Indeed, the attire of all three contrast delightfully with the flowers.
Gekkō focused on several art forms. This includes ukiyo-e, Shijo-style, nihonga, and Chinese art. Therefore, once Gekkō became established, he sought to expand his art and entice new viewers.
He focused on countless art themes – from stylish ladies to war – from nature to important Japanese historical figures. Overall, Gekkō kept an artistic freshness throughout his life.
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