Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Exhibition of the Month: Japanese Prints in Minneapolis

The practice of Japanese woodblock prints goes back centuries, but a new exhibition at the Minneapolis Institute of Art focuses on notable practitioners from a relatively recent time in the history of Japanese prints. “Seven Masters: 20th-Century Japanese Woodblock Prints from the Wells Collection” features 112 works from the late-19th and early-20th centuries, and the show is Drawing magazine’s exhibition of the month for November.

Kawase Hasui | Japanese Prints at MIA |

Spring Dusk at the Tōshō Shrine in Ueno, by Kawase Hasui, 1948, woodblock print. All artwork this exhibition collection Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

“Seven Masters” traces the evolution of shin hanga, a movement in Japanese printmaking that flourised from the 1910s to 1940s. “During the early 20th century, when all art forms were undergoing unprecedented changes, a small group of artists created beautiful and enticing prints that captured Japan’s dynamic, modern life,” said Andreas Marks, the MIA’s Mary Griggs Burke Curator of Japanese and Korean Art. “Shin hanga employed the highest production values of traditional Japanese printmaking within a very new social context and market. This exhibition explores seven artists’ unique approaches to the modernization of Japanese culture and, by showcasing the diversity of this critical art form, seeks to offer insight into the world of this phenomenon.”

Below, you can enjoy a few examples of the prints on view in the exhibition, which runs through March 13, 2016. A 288-page catalogue accompanies the show. For more information, visit

Yamakawa Shūhō | Japanese Prints at MIA |

Approaching Snow, by Yamakawa Shūhō, 1927, woodblock print.

Friedrich (Fritz) Capelari| Japanese Prints at MIA |

Umbrellas, by Friedrich (Fritz) Capelari, 1915, woodblock print.

Hashiguchi Goyō| Japanese Prints at MIA |

Woman Applying Powder, by Hashiguchi Goyō, 1918, woodblock print with mica and embossing.

Kawase Hasui| Japanese Prints at MIA |

Evening Shower at Imai Bridge, by Kawase Hasui, 1932, woodblock print.


Itō Shinsui | Japanese Prints at MIA |

A Woman in Western Dress, by Itō Shinsui, 1960, woodblock print.

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