Inoue Yasuji and Japan Art: Cherished Artist Taken Too Young

Inoue Yasuji and Japan Art: Cherished Artist Taken Too Young

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Inoue Yasuji (1864-1889) was born in Japan during the late Edo Period. However, he died in his mid-twenties during the Meiji Period (1868-1912).

Accordingly, a blossoming printmaker – mentored by the esteemed Kobayashi Kiyochika (1847-1915) – died before he could bloom. This naturally left Kiyochika and many others crestfallen.

It is famously reported that Yasuji – in the late 1870s – witnessed Kiyochika sketching in the coldness of winter by the Sumida River. After several hours, Yasuji bravely spoke to Kiyochika and asked him to be his mentor.

Kiyochika was famous for utilizing scenes connected to dawn, dusk, and nightfall. Hence, the prints of Yasuji witness his influence.

Yasuji created many lovely prints of Tokyo witnessed in this article. One can only imagine his influence on the Japanese artistic scene if life had been more kind to him.

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