【Edo Tokyo Rethink】Takahashi Kobo x Noritaka Tatehana
For over 160 years, Takahashi Kobo has created Edomoku-hanga, or Edo woodblock prints.
It now acts as a publisher, creating restored ukiyo-e prints from the Edo era as well as creating prints by modern woodblock print artists.
The first of its collaborative works is a set of woodblock prints with the motifs of thunderclouds.
They use three types of special woodblock printing techniques to reproduce a slice of Edo culture, said to be the foundation of modern printing.
The first technique iskarazuri, an embossing technique that uses no pigment.
The second isshomenzuri, in which a non-reversed plate is used to impart a shine to Japanese washi paper.
The third iskirazuri, a technique used in the backgrounds of works by ukiyo-e artists Toshusai Sharaku and Kitagawa Utamaro.
The second work, a hoso-e piece, is made using “beni” rouge.
Hoso-e were used as charms to ward off infectious diseases during the Edo era. They were made using rouge as their sole pigment, due to its symbolic meaning of warding off evil.
The backgrounds use Isehan Honten’s ownsaiku-benirouge to attempt to reproduce the actual techniques used in the printing of hosoe-e prints during the Edo era.
*All necessary safety precautions were taken during the interview as part of COVID-19 prevention.
Online Exhibition Outline
Exhibition Title: Edo Tokyo Rethink -The Future of Traditional Industry Seen Through Art at the Kyu-Iwasaki-tei Gardens-
Organizer: Tokyo Metropolitan Government, Edo-Tokyo Kirari Project
Co-organizer: Tokyo Metropolitan Park Association