The Museum of Modern Art in Wakayama Opens a Retrospective of Yoshihara Hideo
Wakayama - DEC 20, 2011
The Museum of Modern Art Wakayama is proud to present "Yoshihara Hideo: A Retrospective", on view at the museum from November 19th through January 15th 2012.

This exhibition marks the first retrospective show of the artists work since his death in 2007. In addition to works from the museum's own colleection, artifacts from the artist's studio will be presented. Yoshihara was born at Hiroshima in 1931, and began to take a keen interest in art in his high school days at Tennoji High School, Osaka. Although he took part in the founding of Gutai, whose leader Yoshihara Jiro was one of his distant relatives, soon he disaffiliated himself and joined in the Demokrato Artist Association, where he took significantly inspiration from Izumi Shigeru, the leader of Demokrato in Kansai district and began print making. His approach to lithograph bore fruit in "Sunflower" (1956), which is full of narrative and lyrical expression, and won a prize at the 1st International Biennial Exhibition of Prints in Tokyo, 1957. In the 1960s, his style moved on to a somewhat abstract form, and once again he expanded his technique in the latter half of ’60s by combining lithograph and etching on a single sheet of paper. These experimental works were highly praised and successively presented in large shows including the Bienal Internacional de Artes de São Paulo (where he represented Japan), the 8th Cotemporary Art Exhibition of Japan (where he won the award for excellence) and the 6th International Biennial Exhibition of Prints in Tokyo (received the award from the Ministry of Education). Even after gaining these acclaim, Yoshihara never stopped exploring his expression, and kept on trying to capture various phases of human beings. The artist had numerous exhibitions and awards in Japan and overseas including the International Print Biennials in Tokyo and San Paulo. Hideo Yoshihara wrote several books and taught at Kyoto Municipal Art College. The artist received prestigious medals for his contributions to the Japanese art from the Japanese government in 1992, 1994 and 2002. In 1996 he was honored as 'professor emeritus' of Kyoto Municipal Art College. In this show the museum traces his experiment and progress, marking the 5th anniversary of his death and the 80th anniversary of his birth. The unique building of the Museum of Modern Art, Wakayama, presents a beautiful contrast with the traditional Japanese architecture of the Wakayama Castle and its famous rooftop that is seen nearby surrounded by urban greenery. The building was designed by Kisho Kurokawa. In 1963, the Wakayama Prefecture Museum was opened in the Wakayama Castle Park, and in 1970, it was transformed as the Museum of Modern Art, Wakayama. In July 1994, the Museum of Modern Art moved from the Wakayama Culture Center to the new building near the Tenshukaku. Designed by architect Kisho Kurokawa, the unique architecture creates an interesting contrast with the Wakayama castle. The museum has a spacious lobby, a hall for lectures and film screenings, a museum shop, and a restaurant. The Museum of Modern Art, Wakayama, has a rich collection of home-town Wakayama artists, such as Kigai Kawaguchi and Banka Nonagase. In addition, the Museum especially features a collection and introduction of art prints. This is because many frontier artists who left important landmarks in the history of modern Japanese art print have links with Wakayama. Those printmakers include Yozo Hamaguchi (mezzotint), Kyokichi Tanaka (woodcut), Koshiro Onchi (woodcut), among others. The Museum is proud of its print collection as one of the best in Japan. It also has a overseas art prints such as those of Pablo Picasso and Odilon Redon. Other collections include those of Mark Rothko, Frank Stella, George Segal, and Japanese modern artists of the Kansai area (Western Japan). As well as its famous print collection, the museum also has Japanese traditional paintings, oil paintings, sculptures and art prints of the Meiji Period (1868-1912) as well as contemporary pieces.
The museum display changes periodically, and various exhibitions and featured collections are organized in order to exhibit as many works as possible from its holdings for public viewing. Special exhibitions are organised on a regular basis.

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Article: Art Knowledge News

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