Toraji Ishikawa

(Japan 1875 – 1964)


Not on display
Further information

In the history of twentieth century Japanese graphics, the period between the two World Wars was one of dissension as the debate between pure Japanese art and Western influenced art became extremely polarised. Primarily a painter, Ishikawa was a founding member of the conservative school of Western-style painting, and studied in the United States and Europe before returning to Japan in 1904. In his prints he attempted a synthesis between East and West through the use of the woodblock, a medium which the Japanese had mastered completely. However, Ishikawa still followed the traditional method of having his blocks cut and printed by specialists rather than doing it himself as advocated by members of the 'sôsaku hanga' (creative print) movement. This print is one of a series of ten nudes that the artist did in 1934, fusing contemporary French ideas with the traditional Japanese sense of design. While the colour, design and flatness might be credited to the inherent Japanese sensibility for patterns and colours, the laconic, world weary mien of the model has a decidedly Parisian/Bohemian feel.

'Asian Art', AGNSW Collections, 1994, pg. 227

Place of origin
Japan: Shôwa period 1926–1988
colour woodcut
38.0 x 30.0 cm image; 48.5 x 37.8 cm sheet
Signature & date

Signed l.r., ink, inscribed "Ishikawa" [and artist's seal]. Not dated.

Purchased with funds provided by Yasuko Myer 1992
Accession number