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Although Toraji Ishikawa was a painter and printmaker with a wide variety of subjects and a focus on landscapes, everybody knows him mainly for a series of ten prints in Shin Hanga style, published in 1934 and titled Ten Types of Female Nudes.
First Publication: June 2002
Latest Update: May 2013
Toraji Ishikawa was born in Kochi. He studied art with Koyama Shotaro. In 1902 the young artist traveled through the United States and Europe for two years.
Back in Japan, Toraji Ishikawa founded Taiheiyogakai, an artist association of Western style painters. He exhibited in all major Japanese art shows since the 1920s. In 1923 he contributed to the supplement of Dai Chikamatsu Zenshu - The Complete Works of Chikamatsu.
In 1934 Toraji Ishikawa created the famous series of ten chubby female nudes. People seem to know him only by these prints as if he had not created anything else in his life.
The irony is that Toraji was more of a Western style painter. These ten prints - with one exception - are more Japanese in style than anything else the artist had done before.
The print titled Dance is a rather modern design of a voluptuous nude striptease dancer in high-heels. It is in contrast to the other 9 prints showing nudes in the seclusion of their intimate privacy - playing with pets, reading a book or doing their toilette in a modern bathroom.
In 1943 Toraji Ishikawa became head of the Pacific Art School. After World War II, he was active at the Tokyo University of Education. In 1953 he received the Imperial Award of the Japan Art Academy.
The series is discussed in detail in an article titled Ten Types of Female Nudes.
Toraji Ishikawa contributed to the series "Dai Chikamatsu Zenshu" ("The complete Works of Chikamatsu Manzaemon"). The design shows tThe heroine Toragozen in the kabuki play of the Soga Brothers, "Soga". Toragozen laments her lover, Soga-Juro-Sukenari, who was killed in the revenge battle.
26 sold object(s) by Toraji Ishikawa 1875-1964 in our Art Archive
3 signature(s) by Toraji Ishikawa in our Signature Database
Author: Dieter Wanczura
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