Hokusai and the wave that swept the world (2023)

Private view |Art history

(Photo credit:

Katsukaza Hokazu / Museu M F Funa RTS, Bo S Ton


Hokusai and the wave that swept the world (1)

Without the Japanese record label Hokusai it may never have happened.Jason Farago examines the moment when European art became Japanese.


In the beginning was the wave.The blue and white tsunami, which rose from the left of the composition as a huge claw, becomes a bad fuji bad Kanagawa's Welle, one of the thirty-six views of Hokusai from Mount Fuji, is an icon of Japan, since the impression in the years 1830-31was hit for the first time, but is part of a complex global art, trade and political network.Your intensive blue comes from Hokusai'sPioneer Use of Prussian blue ink- A foreign pigment, imported, probably by China, England or Germany.The wave stretched beyond Japan from the start.

This week the Museum of Fine Arts opens in Boston, in which the largest collection of Japanese art takes place outside of Japan.A huge Hokusai art retrospective, show their indispensable impressions of the wooden block of the genre, which we callUkiyo -e, or "pictures of the floating world".It is the second retrospective of Hokusai in less than a year;Last autumn to see the mega show of two parts of the artist in Grand Palais in Paris in Paris, which have been expanded for two hours or more.The American and French audience loves Hokusai - and has centuries.It is not only one of the great figures of Japanese art, but also a fatherly figure of western modernism.The world was perhaps from global art that we take today, it may seem very different.

Hokusai and the wave that swept the world (2)

Fine wind, clear morning is part of Hokusai's thirty -year series (Credit: Alamy)

(Video) Know the Artist: Hokusai

Thin impression

Hokusai's impressions only reached the West after the artist's death in 1849. During his life in Japan, he was still exposed toIsolation, the longstanding politics that prohibited foreigners to go with the death penalty and leave Japanese.But in the 1850s, with the arrival of the "black ships" of the American Navy under Matthew Perry, Japan, his isolation policy - and officers and officers and diplomats, then artists and collectors, discovered the Japanese impression of wooden block.In Japan, Hokusai was considered vulgar, taking into account the imperial literary.The perspective of a point would have a revolutionary effect.

Both the style and the topic ofUkiyo -eImpressions attracted young artists like Felix Bracquemond, one of the first French artists seduced by Japan.The Japanese prints that traveled west to Perry in the early years, Hiroshigen and Umaro.Many of the impressions that have been arrived were used as a packaging role for commercial products.Everyone changed the Eiffel Tower.Ukiyo -eThe impressions showed the depth of the Japanese engraving for French artists for the first time.

Hokusai and the wave that swept the world (3)

Monet was inspired by his Japanese garden in Giverny for many of his famous late works (loan: The Print Collector/Getty Images)

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Claude Monet was, we know and soonMonet had acquired 250 Japanese impressions, including 23 from Hokusai, who covered the walls of his house in Giverny, northern France.The series of grains and hops of Monet, the Rouen cathedral and the Waterloo Bridge owe a lot to Hokusai's previous experiments to describe a single topic about dozens of images.The influence came from Monet's art in his life.This woman wore a kimono in the house.Govery Garden is modeled on the bridge and bamboo immediately after a Japanese pressure.

Other artists were less influenced by Hokusais landscapes than through their representations of human forms.Mango-thousands of fish sketches, Sumo fighter, Geisha and residents of the city every day the inspiration for their drastic representations of women inCenturyParis.Your dancers, curved backs and profile faces, they show some properties of the Japanese portrait, but they see the influence of Hokusai, especially in Dega's bathers: both artists were unusual for private, non -public appearances.From 1866 and now at Musée D ', people were interested in private, not public appearances.Orsay, it is proud of a two -dimensional composition with severe debtsUkiyo -e. And their admission ofMary Cassate Kin-LouvreQuotes directly from Hokusai'sMango: Cassatt changed his weight into one leg while the woman whose pose she imitates isPulled by a wild horse.

Hokusai and the wave that swept the world (4)

The composition of the Degas bathtub shows a strong fault with the Japanese engraving (loan: Edgar Degas/Musée d'Orsay, Paris)

This Degas recording shows a further influence of Hokusai and other recorders of recognition: they have raised the call of the graphic in France and printed on a more respectable means for visual artists.Cassatt EscreveuTo her colleague artist Berthe Morisot on the occasion of an exhibition of Japanese impressions."You who want to make colorful impressions, you can not imagine anything better ... youhe mustSee the Japanese - come as quickly as possible. Sime modern engraving fell almost exactly with the arrival of Japanese art in France, and nobody hugged both as passionately as Henri de Toulouse -Lautrec.Although he started as a painter, Lautrec soon moved exclusively for impressions and poster.

DelePost for the Japanese divanA Paris nightclub, which is decorated with bamboo and paper flashlights, shows Cancan Jane Avril's dancer in the heavy and eastern profile.Ukiyo -eWas both social and formal.The large festivals that are repeated in Lauutrecs impressions and posters come from the example of Hokusai and other Japanese artists.Ukiyo -eThe impressions showed that Lautrec could be life - tea houses, restaurants, brothels - the art material.

(Video) The Great Wave off Dominaria | The Story of a Timeless Woodblock Print
Hokusai and the wave that swept the world (5)

Toulouse-Lautrec hugged Japanese art and engraving, as in his poster for the Japanese nightclub Le Divan (Credit: Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec/Wikipedia)

Climb in the east

Remember what Hokusai and another broughtUkiyo -eThe attention of Monet, Degas, Cassatt and Lautrec was unequal, unequal agreements between Japan and the west of Meiji.From JapanFantasy, it was a country that was kept in amber -colored amber over its two and a half centuries isolation.It was a place where everyday life was still in beauty and purity that industrialization had exploded by European society.During the entire depth of Japanese art to monumental sculpture, Chinese -influenced paintings, Buddhist relics.Instead, her interest was more like the American naval officer of the Puccini Opera, Madame Butterfly: Passion for a girl in Nagasaki, but never in doubt that he has power in his unequal relationship.

1905, when the Imperial Army had won in the Russian-Japanese War that the imagination could no longer capture a country of fair women in the community with nature.Japan kept his aesthetic reputation for elegance, harmony and simplicity for the westerners of the early 20th century - architect Frank Lloyd Wright, by AUkiyo -eCollector.But it is no coincidence that Picasso, Braque, Rousseau and other French artists who reached the age of the adultJapaneseHe turned to Africa (and to a lesser extent Oceania) to fulfill his primitivist fantasies.Too freed from the stricts of western representation when Impressionists began to do and how Cubists may have a look at the worlds beyond Europe.But the only thing they couldn't endure was when the people of these worlds came back.

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1. How Hokusai shaped western art | FT Life
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2. Know the Artist Shorts: Katsushika Hokusai
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3. The Great Wave by Katsushika Hokusai at the Victoria and Albert Museum
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4. Hokusai Wave
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5. The Great Wave off Kanagawa by Hokusai || G-KNOWLEDGE
6. Hokusai's Great Waves and the Maritime Turn in Japanese Visual Culture
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