This page provides a list of major artists who designed or contributed to woodblock prints in shin hanga style in the first half of the twentieth century. The shin hanga activities were mostly centered in Tokyo, encouraged by the woodblock print publisher Shozaburo Watanabe. But also Kyoto and to a lesser degree Osaka were active in the shin hanga art movement.
Around 1910 a renaissance of the old Japanese tradition of making woodblock prints was initiated by a print publisher with the name of Shozaburo Watanabe. The central idea of shin hanga ("new prints"), as the new movement was called, was to revive the old tradition of making woodblock prints in a teamwork of artists, skilled carvers and printers and a publisher who was responsible for the commercial success.
Shin Hanga lasted roughly until the year of Watanabe's death in 1962 and was a very successful art movement under commercial aspects. The success continues until our days among collectors and art friends and with fresh imopressions of shin hanga prints from the original blocks.
Apart from the Japanese artists in Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, there were also several Western artists who lived in Japan and created woodblock prints in shin hanga style - most of them worked for Watanabe. Only Paul Jacoulet published himself.
Author: Dieter Wanczura