Japan Art and Red Maples

Japan Art and Red Maples

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

All three art pieces focus on different dimensions of maple trees in Japan. Hence, the delightful art piece above by Tsukioka Kōgyo (1869-1927) focuses on a young lady enjoying a quiet moment while sitting below a red maple tree.

Tsukioka Kōgyo – who studied under Tsukioka Yoshitoshi and Ogata Gekko – focuses on the serene nature of the stylish young lady and the soothing effect of the red maple tree.

In contrast to the serenity of the first art piece, the autumn day by Tomikichiro Tokuriki (1902-1999) is windy, with rain falling. Hence, the worker struggles against the elements – despite the beauty of the red maple trees and the bridge.

The British Museum says,  “In 1928 he studied ‘Nihonga’ painting under Tsuchida Bakusen (1887-1936) and Yamamoto Shunkyo (1871-1933) and exhibited with Kokuga Sosaku Kyokai, but about the same time in 1929 he changed to woodblock printing under the influence of Hiratsuka Un’ichi and began to contribute to the early print magazine ‘Han’...

In the last art piece, Kamisaka Sekka (1866-1942) focuses on a happy-looking young lady carrying red maples in a basket.

The Panasonic Shiodome Museum of Art says, “Kamisaka Sekka (1866–1942) was an influential nihon-ga painter and designer in early 20th century Kyoto. Upon visiting Europe at the turn of the 20th century to study the latest movements in arts and crafts, Sekka began to see the beauty of traditional Japanese decorative arts in a new light. He both emulated the style of the 17th-century Rimpa school and fused classical and modern ideas and moved freely between the fields of fine art and design.”

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