Japan art and landscapes: Lakes and rivers

Japan art and landscapes: Lakes and rivers

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

In this stunning art piece, Mount Fuji can be seen in the background while a person goes fishing on Lake Kawaguchi. Tsuchiya Kōitsu (1870-1949) completed this during the early Showa Period.

The Koller Collection of Asian Art says, “Kōitsu Tsuchiya 土屋光逸 (1870–1949) was a master landscape print designer part of the New Prints Movement (shin-hanga) in early 20th c. Japan. His prints, known for their intriguing color schemes and theatrical use of light, are referred to as light ray pictures (kosen-ga).”

The above art piece is by Kawase Hasui (1883-1957). He belongs to the world of Shin-Hanga (New Prints). Throughout his life, he witnessed the dramatic changes that engulfed Japan. Kōitsu also lived during the same period. However, when viewing the art of Hasui and Kōitsu, you can still feel a connection with the past that provides comfort.

The Museum of Art (MOA) says, “Kawase Hasui (1883–1957) initially studied painting under Kaburagi Kiyotaka, but sensational landscape woodcuts by Ito Shinsui changed the course of his career forever, to become a painter specializing in woodblock designs.”

The final art piece is by Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849). He focuses on the Fuefuki River in the town of Isawa in the prefecture of Yamanashi.

The British Museum says, “The leading ‘Ukiyoe’ artist of the later Edo period, Hokusai had the longest career of any of them – more than seventy years – and during this time changed his style many times, making unique contributions in all fields. As his art name ‘Gakyojin’ suggests, he was indeed ‘mad with painting’.”

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