Japanese Art Influence

August 19, 2011 § Leave a comment

What was the kind of art around WWII in Japan?

Well from just sussing a little bit out, it seems that there were two movements derived from the Meiji period (a time of political & social change influenced by Europe and the process of modernization). So there was the Western style of painting coined at Yoga; where many artists studied abroad. Then were was the revival of appreciation for traditional Japanese style of art which was coined as Nihonga.

Here is a painting by a student from the program in Nihonga (Japanese style painting), which is for students who majored in Art and Design at the University of Tsukuba.

These are two movements that I can be influenced by, to introduce a bit more of a Japanese aesthetic to my illustrations, but I will nonetheless keep true to my style. I feel that the illustrations should not be defined by Japan, it is more about the animals and my interpretation of those animals and their experience. The illustrations would be tailored to my style so that the audience can perceive my illustrations as not obviously Japanese but perceive and embrace my subjective interpretation.

Anyway, during World War II, the government had control and censorship which meant that only patriotic themes could be expressed. Many artists were consequently recruited into the government propaganda effort. You can see with the graphic design of that time of how the European style influenced their own. So it is appropriate for my illustrations to have that amalgamation for the two cultures I would like to think.

So here are some examples of Japanese graphic design preceding World War II | and have a look at more here Click Here


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