(Japan 1955 – )
61.5 x 79.0 cm image; 69.0 x 91.0 cm sheet
Kanaida depicts on thick paper an imaginary fantasy town inhabited only by cats. For the Japanese cats are rich in magical and folkloric associations; the cat has long been credited with mysterious supernatural powers, and there are many and varied folk stories about cats. Images of the 'maneki neko' (beckoning cat), with one paw raised, are to be seen in doorways and windows all over Japan, serving as mascots to entice riches and good fortune inside. Since cats often appear as ghosts or goblins, Kanaida's print also could be seen as a metaphor for a ghost town. Recently in metropolitan Japan, cats have assumed a more poignant significance as companions for people living alone in busy cities. These historical and modern associations of the cat form the warp and weft of Kanaida's original image.
Kanaida lives in Tokyo, having been educated at Tama Art University and born in Yamanashi.
Jackie Menzies, Contemporary Japanese Prints: The Urban Bonsai, 1992, pg. 53.
Jackie Menzies, Contemporary Japanese Prints : The Urban Bonsai, Sydney, 1992, 47 (colour illus.), 53. cat.no. 23
The Urban Bonsai: