Japan Art and Fujimori Shizou: New Tokyo (1928-1932)

Japan Art and Fujimori Shizou: New Tokyo (1928-1932)

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

The Japanese printmaker Fujimori Shizou was one of several artists who completed One Hundred Views of New Tokyo (1928-1932).

This period in Japan offered people hope and the continuation of modernization. However, the triple forces of fascism, nationalism, and militarism would engulf the ruling elites in Germany, Italy, and Japan. Therefore, the dynamics of East Asia and Europe would witness darkening clouds – and create convulsions further afield.

The One Hundred Views of New Tokyo was jointly completed by the artists Maekawa Senpan, Un’ichi Hiratsuka, Kawakami Sumio, Koshiro Onchi, Henmi Takashi, Suwa Kanenori, Sakuichi Fukazawa, and Fujimori Shizou.

In their respective versions of Tokyo, you witness natural landscapes, everyday life, continuity, and modernization. Accordingly, a New Tokyo was developing in the early Showa Period – through the prism of sosaku hanga (creative prints).

The three prints in this article were done by Fujimori Shizou (1891-1943).

The British Museum says, “From 1936 he began to produce woodblock illustrations for serials in the Fukuoka ‘Asahi Shinbun’ newspaper and returned to live in Iizuka in 1940, dying in 1943, the year after the sudden death of his elder son. Fujimori’s landscape and figurative styles were heavily influenced by Expressionism, and contributed notably to the bleak atmosphere of ‘One Hundred New Views of Tokyo’…”

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