Like his contemporary, Hiroshi Yoshida, Kawase Hasui was a renowned woodblock print artist of the Shin hanga, or “new prints” movement in early 20th Century Japan.
Also like Yoshida, Hasui traveled extensively and produced images of a variety of locations, though not as much outside of Japan as Yoshida. Instead, Hasui sought out remote landscapes within an increasingly industrialized and populated Japan.
His prints are often of scenes in snow, rain, twilight or darkness, though bright sunlight can also play its part, and he can be wonderfully evocative of different atmospheric and light conditions.
Many of his earliest prints, which are considered by some to be his best work, were lost in an earthquake in 1923. They must have been stunning because those that remain are extraordinarily beautiful.
Since my previous post on Kawase Hsui, some new sources for images have become available on the web. In addition to the web resources listed below, there is a currently in print collection of his work Visions of Japan (Kawase Hasui). You can also find his work in broader collections of Japanese woodblock prints.
Castle Fine Arts (note multiple pages)
WoodblockPrint.com.au (large if uneven reproductions)
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Bio on Viewing Japanese Prints
Bio on Artelino
Hiroshi Yoshida (update)
7 Replies to “Kawase Hasui (update)”
What amazing work! I have long had a beautiful print of a woman walking in the evening rain, but I’ve never known who created the print. When I saw certain of these prints, I felt it just might be Kawase Hsui. I did some digging, and it turns out to be Shiro Kasamatsu (Rainy Night at Shinobazu Pond) instead. Still, an old personal mystery solved, and a new artist discovered, so thank you on both counts!
Beautiful beautiful art. I’m also a fan of contemporary art using that style. Which brings me to the suggestion that maybe you’d find this guy interesting: Matthew Meyer is an american living in Japan with his japanese wife. His art is still a little rough around the edges but for two years he had the “Yokai a day” project, during which he painted a traditional japanese monster/demon/ghost everyday of October. This year, he successfully kickstarted an illustrated book project and is almost done working on a book about japanese demons, with all new monster paintings. His blog is at matthewmeyer.net in the Fans section. There is a bit of non-yokai noise in there, but this is a good exemple of a yokai painting. http://www.matthewmeyer.net/blog/2011/07/29/night-parade-preview-nozuchi
Thank you for keeping up with the blog, I always enjoy discovering new artists.
Thanks, David. I haven’t done a post on Kasamatsu yet, but I have written about another artist who worked more with figurative subjects than the landscape artists featured here, Ito Shinsui.
Thanks, Chantal. Mayer’s Yokai look like great fun.
Other readers can see examples of other Yokai, traditional and otherwise, on Pink Tentacle. You can also see Chantal Fournier’s fantasy illustrations here.
Here’s a nice large format calendar of Japanese prints:
The 2011 edition featured Kawase Hasui.
Thanks, Ryan. The current calendar looks like a nice collection of prints by Hiroshige.
For the benefit of other readers, here is my post on Hiroshige’s Views of Edo in the Brooklyn Museum.
If you are interested in Kawase Hasui’s artistic methods.
I have posted an original watercolour and also a video which shows Hasui drawing and the production of his woodblock prints.
Hasui prints, drawings and watercolors
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