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Collection

SOBASHIMA Yasuhiro

(Japan 1947 – )

Title
Cherry blossom party
Place of origin
Japan
Period
Heisei period 1989 - → Japan
Year
1991
Media category
Print
Materials used
lithograph and woodcut
Edition
1/10
Dimensions

56.0 x 76.0 cm sheet

Credit
Gift of the artist 1993
Accession number
459.1993
Location
Not on display
Further information

Sobajima was born in Gifu, completed Graduate School at the Tokyo University of Fine Arts and Music, and now lives in Chiba Prefecture.

For his subjects Sobajima draws on daily life, continuing a genre tradition that dates back centuries. In Japanese painting there has always been a specific category of paintings to do with the activities peculiar to each season. No activity is more famous than cherry blossom viewing ('hanami') in spring and Sobajima depicts a hedonistic group of picnickers having a good time and enjoying their boxed lunches and sake, under the falling petals. The subject of flower viewing has long held a important place in literature, dance and the fine arts.

Sobajima depicts his revellers, two of whom have developed the jaws of cats, in the style of 'ukiyo-e', literally pictures of the floating world, a metaphor for the transient pleasures of the corporeal world. In adapting the 'ukiyo-e' style he shows the true lighthearted and frivolous nature of the Japanese. Sobajima's work recalls that of the great 'ukiyo-e' artist Kuniyoshi (1798-1861) who loved cats and often used them to caricature people and their foibles.

Jackie Menzies, Contemporary Japanese Prints: The Urban Bonsai, 1992, pg. 88-89.

Bibliography (1)

Jackie Menzies, Contemporary Japanese Prints : The Urban Bonsai, Sydney, 1992, 87 (colour illus.), 88, 89. cat.no. 54

Exhibition history (1)

The Urban Bonsai: