Saturday, January 18, 2014

"Above the Clouds" by Hiroshi Yoshida

In the history of Japanese wood block printmaking, I most prefer the late ukiyo-e and shin-hanga that followed (Hiroshi Yoshida falls in the latter category.) The reason is mainly color. Just as the Impressionists and Post Impressionists were having their love affairs with new pigments with which to paint light in all its breathtaking varieties, modern Japanese printmakers were using color in just as sophisticated, expressive, if more subtle ways.

In this image, the outline is barely discernible. The gradations soft and subtle as in a watercolor painting. Mountains, purple and washed over by currents in the thick atmosphere. They rest under clouds that appear like bubbles of sea-foam. In the distance, the tallest mountain rises up like an island. Lonely, yet triumphantly reaching toward another world.

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