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Kinoshita, Tomio (1923 - 2014)

Three Masks (Kamen 3)

Medium: Woodblock Print
Date: 1957
Size (H x W): 23 x 30.75 (inches)
Edition: 1/57(?)
Signature: Kinoshita Tomio in kanji on right margin, Tomio Kinoshita in roman letters on bottom margin
Condition: Good color and impression, soiling and wear, small tears and nicks along edges, tape residue on reverse.


About the artist

Kinoshita Tomio was a 20th century woodblock print artist of the Sosaku Hanga (“creative print”) movement. Born in Yokkaichi, Mie Prefecture, Kinoshita graduated from Nagoya City Crafts High School in 1941 before spending two years working as a lens polisher in Manchuria. In 1956, inspired by the work of Hiratsuka Un’ichi (1895-1997), Kinoshita became an active member of Sosaku Hanga movement. Within a year he began exhibiting his prints with Nihon Hanga Kyokai, followed by Kokugakai in 1958. By 1959, he was a member of both print organizations. Over the next decade he participated in shows in Japan and abroad, including the Philadelphia International Prints Exhibition of 1963, and the Tokyo Biennale in both 1962 and 1968. Kinoshita’s early work is marked by jagged lines, roughly hewn with a flat chisel, often depicting scenes of life in Yokkaichi. His later work turns toward abstraction, through scenes of faces given form through slight angles and countless parallel lines. Kinoshita printed he designs as needed in a range of colors. The dates found on these prints refer to the date of printing rather than the date the block was carved. In the 1980s, Tomio Kinoshita stopped producing woodblock prints and focused on seal carving, a skill he had learned from his wife before his print career began. Today, Kinoshita’s prints can be found in prestigious collections around the world, such as the British Museum, Art Institute of Chicago, Honolulu Academy of Arts, Museum of Modern Art New York, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, to name just a few.