VA -- Richmond -- Virginia Museum of Fine Arts -- Exhibit: Miwako Nishizawa: Twelve Views of Virginia:
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Description of Pictures: Miwako Nishizawa: Twelve Views of Virginia
November 15, 2014 – March 29, 2015
Miwako Nishizawa is a California-based Japanese-American artist specializing in the traditional shin-hanga Japanese woodblock technique that revitalized the ukiyo-e tradition in early 20th century Japan. As part of their interest in the work of shin-hanga artist Kawase Hasui, collectors René and Carolyn Balcer commissioned Nishizawa to execute “Twelve Views of Virginia” in the shin-hanga style. This exhibition uses working drawings and artist proofs from the series to demonstrate the technique. These will be exhibited at the same time as a large exhibition of works by Hasui in the Evans Court Gallery.
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Specific picture descriptions: Photos above with "i" icons next to the bracketed sequence numbers (e.g. " ") are described as follows:
VMFA12_141227_001.JPG: Twelve Views of Virginia
"I hope that each of my fleeting impressions of Virginia is like a once-in-a-lifetime meeting -- ichigo ichie -- a reminder to treasure every moment, for it will never recur.
-- Miwako Nishizawa
Miwako Nishizawa is a California-based Japanese artist specializing in the moku-hanga Japanese woodblock printmaking technique, more commonly known as ukiyo-e, and still one of the most popular contemporary printmaking methods in Japan.
For Nishizawa, rendering a landscape captures a specific experience rather than just a place. In her travels around Virginia, she listened to blue grass music at the Floyd Country Store, watched Richmonders strolling the paths of Belle Isle, and witnessed a dramatic red sky over the most brutal of Civil War sites, Manassas Battlefield. In her eyes, each and every one of these experiences was intensely real but, at the same time, inevitably transient.
VMFA12_141227_007.JPG: Miwako Nishizawa
Manassas National Battlefield, 2011
VMFA12_141227_081.JPG: The Japanese Woodblock Print:
The process of creating a traditional Japanese woodblock print begins with the artist's sketch, usually made with pencil, Sumi ink, and watercolor. The sketch is then glued onto a wooden block upside down so that when the block is printed, the image will have the same orientation as the original sketch. Specialized cutting tools are used to cut away wood, leaving areas that will not hold color; the uncut areas are inked with a dense, horsehair brush to produce the image. Using a circular hand-held pad called a baren, the artist creates a print by rubbing the back of a piece of dampened paper that has been placed over the inked block. The ink is transferred to the paper, and the print is complete. Most Japanese woodblock prints are multicolored, and each color requires another wooden block to be carved, inked, and layered onto the initial key image.
VMFA12_141227_085.JPG: Miwako Nishizawa
College of William and Mary, 2011
VMFA12_141227_091.JPG: Miwako Nishizawa
Hollywood Cemetery, Richmond, 2011
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