Red sails in the sunset
Saito is a master at manipulating the sensuous subtle tones obtainable with the European mezzotint technique. It is only in the recent post-war decades that mezzotint has flowered as an artistic medium in Japan. Its pioneers were Hasegawa Kiyoshi (1891-1980) and Hamaguchi Yozo (born 1909), both of whom studied in France in their search to revive mezzotint techniques, and who have achieved international recognition for their technical virtuosity in the use of mezzotint. Today Saito is acknowledged, with Hamaguchi, as the most accomplished technician in mezzotint working in Japan. Now living in Kanagawa Prefecture where he was born, Saito was educated at the Academy 46 Art Institute.
In this small rich gem of a print, Saito expressively explores the medium of colour mezzotint to capture the quietude of red sails drifting rhythmically on a still sea at sunset. This is a more unusual subject for Saito who is perhaps better known for his studies of women, beautifully dressed in traditional kimono.
Jackie Menzies, Contemporary Japanese Prints: The Urban Bonsai, 1992, pg. 68.
Place where the work was made
Heisei period 1989 - → Japan
30.0 x 36.0 cm image; 43.5 x 52.0 cm sheet
Signature & date
Signed l.r., pencil "Kaoru". Dated l.c., pencil " '91".
Gift of the artist 1993
Not on display
Where the work was made
Shown in 1 exhibition
The Urban Bonsai:
- Queensland Art Gallery, South Brisbane 04 Mar 1992–04 May 1992
- National Art Gallery, Wellington, Wellington 20 Jun 1992–09 Aug 1992
- Christchurch Art Gallery, Christchurch 12 Sep 1992–29 Oct 1992
- Manawatu Art Gallery, New Zealand 13 Nov 1992–10 Jan 1993
- The George Adams Gallery, Victorian Arts Centre, Melbourne 18 Mar 1993–25 Apr 1993
- Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney 08 May 1993–01 Aug 1993
- Lewers Bequest and Penrith Regional Art Gallery, Emu Plains 11 Mar 1994–24 Apr 1994
- Drill Hall Gallery, Australian National University, Canberra 19 May 1994–19 Jun 1994
- Campbelltown Arts Centre, Campbelltown 15 Jul 1994–21 Aug 1994
- Moree Plains Gallery, Moree 11 Nov 1994–24 Dec 1994
- Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre, Murwillumbah 01 Feb 1995–05 Mar 1995
Referenced in 1 publication
Contemporary Japanese Prints : The Urban Bonsai, Sydney, 1992, 68, 79 (colour illus.). cat. no. 47