Published by MFA Publications, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Text by Sarah E. Thompson.
The first book to focus exclusively on Hokusai’s landscapes, by one of the world’s leading ukiyo-e specialists
The best known of all Japanese artists, Katsushika Hokusai was active as a painter, book illustrator and print designer throughout his 90-year lifespan. Yet his most famous works—the color woodblock landscape prints issued in series—were produced within a relatively short time, in an amazing burst of creative energy that lasted from about 1830 to 1836. Hokusai’s landscapes revolutionized Japanese printmaking and became icons of world art within a few decades of the artist’s death. Hokusai’s Landscapes focuses exclusively on this pivotal body of the artist’s work, the first book to do so. Featuring stunning color reproductions of works from the incomparable Japanese art collection at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (the largest collection of Japanese prints outside Japan), Hokusai’s Landscapes examines the magnetic appeal of Hokusai’s designs and the circumstances of their creation. The book includes all published prints of the artist’s eight major landscape series: Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji (1830–32), A Tour of Waterfalls in Various Provinces (1833–34), Snow, Moon and Flowers (1833), Eight Views of the Ryukyu Islands (1832–33), One Thousand Pictures of the Ocean (1832–33), Remarkable Views of Bridges in Various Provinces (1834), A True Mirror of Chinese and Japanese Poetry (1833) and One Hundred Poems Explained by the Nurse (1835). Working prolifically in the years just before Japan opened to the West in 1853, Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849) was the first Japanese artist to be internationally recognized. His cleverly composed ukiyo-e prints of everyday life and the landscapes of Edo Japan arrived in a 19th-century Europe gripped by Japonisme-mania, where they influenced artists such as Degas, Gauguin, Manet and Van Gogh.
Published by Skira. Edited with text by Rossella Menegazzo. Text by Donatella Failla.
The undisputed master of ukiyo-e, Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849) is celebrated not only for his series Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji but also for his great versatility expressed in his treatment of all types of subjects: from landscapes to nature, portraits of kabuki actors, beautiful women, warriors and even ghosts and spirits, semilegendary beings and animals. Hokusai is also associated with restless change: of residence, of name (more than 30!) and of style. He had dozens of followers, and each of them represents an aspect of the master’s vast oeuvre. These include Shinsai, Hokkei and Gakutei, who in turn influenced the following generation of artists.
Through a selection of over 250 works from the Municipal Museum of Chiba and other Japanese collections, this publication offers a reading of Hokusai that also includes his legacy, accompanying and comparing his output with that of others who followed in his footsteps and gave life to new lines, forms and balances of color within the classic themes of ukiyo-e.
Published by MFA Publications. Text by Sarah E. Thompson.
Nearly 200 years after Hokusai finished the drawings for this charming illustrated book, this intriguing early Japanese manga is finally being published for the first time – thanks to a curator at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Rediscovered in an old box in the storage rooms of the museum, these Hokusai drawings should have been used to create the woodblocks for printing a continuation of his Manga series. But although scholars have found an advertisement announcing the title, there is no record of the book ever having been produced. Ironically, if the book had actually been published, the drawings would have been destroyed in the woodblock cutting process. Instead, presumably after the decision was made not to publish the book, the drawings were folded and bound together. And so they stayed for nearly two centuries. Author Sarah E. Thompson, Curator of Japanese Art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, has studied the pages in depth for the first time, annotating them to help readers discover these drawings in Hokusai's own hand for themselves. Although Hokusai is most famous today for the color woodblock prints that he made at the end of his life, he was best known during his own times as a popular book illustrator. Hokusai’s Lost Manga includes the sort of lively, behind-the-scenes sketches of daily life that have made the Hokusai Manga so beloved, with appearances by imaginatively conceived sea creatures, refined flowers, heroes and a variety of craftspeople and laborers. Hokusai fans will find prototypes of many of the people and animals that populate the Japanese master’s later landscape prints. The book also includes an especially interesting series of fabulous astrological deities may reflect Hokusai’s practice of Nichiren Buddhism and his devotion to the Bodhisattva Myōken. Hokusai: The Lost Manga will delight – and intrigue – admirers of Hokusai’s prints as well as Manga collectors.
Artist and printmaker Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849) made some of the most iconic images in Japanese art, such as the seminal woodblock print “Under the Wave off Kanagawa (The Great Wave).” Already influential in Japan, Hokusai inspired a new audience of budding Impressionists and post-Impressionists in the West upon the opening of Japan to Europe shortly after his death.
Sarah E. Thompson is Assistant Curator for Japanese Prints at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
Published by MFA Publications. Text by Sarah E. Thompson, Joan Wright, Philip Meredith.
Katsushika Hokusai remains one of Japan's most popular and influential artists. This handy volume presents the wide range of Hokusai's artistic production in terms of one of his most remarkable characteristics: his intellectual ingenuity. It explores the question of how the self-styled "Man Mad about Drawing" approached his subjects—how he depicted human bodies in motion, combined figures and landscapes, represented three-dimensional objects on two-dimensional surfaces and when he used the techniques of illusionism or adjusted reality for greater visual or emotional effect. Including some 50 stunning and unusual paintings, prints and drawings from the peerless Hokusai collection at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, this book is a treasure trove that introduces readers to a witty, wide-ranging and inimitably ingenious Hokusai. Known by at least 30 other names during his lifetime, Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849) was an ukiyo-e painter and printmaker of the Edo period. In 1800, he published his two classic collections of landscapes, Famous Sights of the Eastern Capital and Eight Views of Edo. His influence extended to his Western contemporaries in nineteenth-century Europe, including Degas, Gauguin, Klimt, Franz Marc, August Macke, Manet and van Gogh.