○History of woodcut prints.
During the Edo Period, the multicolored woodblock print, which started in the mid 18th century, was eventually born with Ukiyo-e, called Nishiki. And in the latter half of the 18th century, the historical edition "Shigusaburo Tsuya" appeared, and influenced the product on of Kiyoshi Torii, Utamaro Kitagawa, Higashi Suzurupaku, and so on and as it reached. its height. Ukiyo-e will eventually crossed the ocean and in Europe had a major impact on Impressionist painters. The Ukiyo-e technique born in the Edo era has a background of being done in isolation, and from artists around the world still is still considered as "only Japan original".
Since the Meiji era Ukiyo-e received many influences from overseas and explored various directions. In the Taisho era, as the second person in the historical edition, "Watanabe Shosaburo" adopted a unique techniques such as "Zara rubo", while new painters such as Ito Shinsui-Ito, Kawase Shimizu, Yamamura Koka etc. uncovered new Ukiyo-e prints. This era is called "new prints" in art history.
By popularization of fine arts, "Sōsaku-hanga" that printmaker self-engraved had grown to the mainstream. On the other hand, woodcut print (classic printing technique) was declining by technological progress about plate-making and print.
After the war, the world of the print making workshop started to decline. Although there were only a few, a new style of woodcut print production was continued. Postwar woodcut prints are very different from Ukiyo-e prints. Traditionally,Ukiyo-e was produced under the leadership of an editor, and the work was more intented by the publisher than the writer, but for the new Ukiyo-e, born after the war, the editor took a step back and characterized the author's characteristics. The difference is that the engraver / singer make the wood come alive and the woodprints clearly reflect the intention of each artist. We call these post-war contemporary woodcut work groups "NEO-UKIYOE (neo-ukiyo-e)".
○Birth of NEO-UKIYOE
It is believed to have begun as an experimental plan "woodcut & Hyundai" held at Ukiyo-e Art Museum ("Ricker Art Museum") in Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo in 1979. Since the late 1980s, painters began to produce original works, and now artists such as illustrators, graphic designers, architects, painters, and contemporary artists who work internationally (including overseas artists), attempt to produce artworks in this style. It is drawing attention as a category of innovative art in that will propel into the future.
Yayoi Kusama, Kiyoshi Awazu, Ikko Tanaka, Mitsuo Katsui, Kisho Kurokawa, Makoto Wada、Shouji Yamafuji, Seitaro Kuroda, Ay-O、Katsumi Asaba, Akira Yamaguchi, Mai Miyake, Hideaki Kawashima, Miran Fukuda, Matazo Kayama, Paul Wunderlich, Friedensreich Regentag Dunkelbunt Hundertwasser、Niki de Saint Phalle, Other.