Japan art and Yoshimune Arai: The moon
Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
The Japanese artist Yoshimune Arai produced stunning shin hanga (new prints). However, very little is known about his later life.
Indeed, even the year of his birth is given differently. Some believe he was born in the final years of the Edo Period – which would be replaced by the Meiji Period (1868-1912). Yet his birth is also given in the early Meiji Period.
In these three art pieces, the moon is utilized by Yoshimune Arai to a beautiful effect. Accordingly, in the first art piece, an elegant lady is enjoying her boat trip – with the moon and skyline providing a delightful scene.
In the second art piece, the half-moon makes another delightful scene. However, unlike the romantic and serene feeling of the first art piece, two people are working and carrying seawater to process later into salt.
It is believed that he studied under Tsukioka Yoshitoshi (1839-1892). Nonetheless, so little is known about Yoshimune Arai despite his delightful shin hanga. Therefore, the year of his death is also speculative – some say 1941, and others 1945.
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