Japan Art and Koyama Shōtarō: Western-Style Painting

Japan Art and Koyama Shōtarō: Western-Style Painting

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Koyama Shōtarō (1857-1916) was born in the late Edo Period and influenced by the dynamics of the Meiji Period (1868-1912). He was influenced by the Yōga (Western-style painting) style of art – which impacted the Japanese artistic scene during a period of momentous changes.

The Miyagi Museum of Art (art piece above) says, “Amid the subtle harmony of the brown color scheme appear just a few small spots of red and green, creating a fresh, natural expression with a unique softness within the overall tightness of the handling.” 

He was born in Nagaoka (Niigata Prefecture) but relocated to Tokyo when he was young. One can only imagine how new ideas flowed into his artistic nature.

In 1889, he and other artists, including Asai Chu and Matsuoka Hisashi, created the Meiji Art Association. He also opened his artistic school called Fudō-sha (diversity) in Tokyo.

He taught many aspiring artists. These include Aoki Shigeru, Ishikawa Toraji, Kanokogi Takeshiro, Nagahara Kotaro, Yoshida Hiroshi, Nakamura Fusetsu, and Mitsutani Kunishiro.


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