(Japan 1945 – )
86.0 x 106.0 cm image; 100.0 x 120.0 cm sheet
Hasegawa, born in Fukushima Prefecture where he still lives, is fascinated by the perpetual momentum and mutability of nature and the universe. He studied under Saito Kiyoshi (born 1907), a leading exponent of the 'sosaku hanga' (creative print) movement which emerged and was consolidated in the decade 1911-1920 and subsequently became dominant in the immediate post-war decades 1950-1970, largely due to American patronage during the Occupation. It was in this period that Hasegawa absorbed its ideas. Adherents of the 'sosaku hanga' movement regarded printmaking as a form of creative expression as valid as painting or sculpture, and they considered it important for the artist to be involved in the entire process of production, from the carving of the blocks to the printing. (This method contrasts with the traditional method of Japanese woodblock printing where the artist only did the drawing and then the block-cutter, the printer, and the publisher, took the drawing through the stages of realising it as a print.) The focus was on the artist's relationship to his material and tools, and his ingenuity in eliciting an image from a resistant medium. Hasegawa's vibrant, attractive prints affirm the principles of the 'sosaku hanga' movement.
The Japanese title of this print has richer connotations than the English for the Japanese words suggest the idea of perpetual motion, life's wandering, and transmigration.
Jackie Menzies, Contemporary Japanese Prints: The Urban Bonsai, 1992, pg. 29, 32.
Jackie Menzies, Contemporary Japanese Prints : The Urban Bonsai, Sydney, 1992, 29, 32, 37 (colour illus.). cat.no. 13
The Urban Bonsai:
From this place, Cowra Art Gallery, Cowra, 01 Aug 2004–12 Sep 2004