Munakata, Shiko (1903 - 1975 )

Born in Aomori prefecture, Shiko Munakata is a woodblock print artist best known for his black and white prints and his expressive, sketch-like lines. A self-taught artist, he began his career in oil painting, organizing the Seikokai (Blue Light Group) and exhibiting at Hakujitsukai, Bunten and Teiten. Shiko Munakata changed course in 1926 upon seeing a woodblock print by Sumio Kawakami. After brief instruction from Un’ichi Hiratsuka in 1928, Munakata became active in the printmaking community: he belonged to both Kokugakai (1932-1953) and Nihon Hanga Kyokai (1932-1938), and contributed to many Sosaku Hanga publications. Around 1936, he garnered the support of Soetsu Yamagai and other leaders of the folk art movement. Munakata’s work began to heavily feature Buddhist imagery the following year. During the bombing of Tokyo in 1945, he escaped to Toyama prefecture. He continued printmaking and received first prize in international exhibitions held in Lugano (1952), Sao Paulo (1955) and Venice (1956). Visiting the United States in 1959, Munakata spent a year exhibiting his work throughout the country. Horinji Temple in Kyoto bestowed him with the honorary rank of “Hokkyo” upon his return to Japan. In 1962, he received the rank of “Hogan” from Nisseki Temple in Toyama prefecture. Munakata’s accolades continued through the end of the decade, including the Medal of Honor (1963), the Asahi Shimbun culture prize (1965), and the Order of Cultural Merit (1970).

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Samanthabhadra, Incarnation of Buddha's Fundamental Element

Munakata, Shiko

Samanthabhadra, Incarnation of Buddha's Fundamental Element

JP1-63114

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Yumedono Hall in Horyuji Temple

Munakata, Shiko

Yumedono Hall in Horyuji Temple

JPR1-63102

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Kātyāyana, Master of Fundamental Principles

Munakata, Shiko

Kātyāyana, Master of Fundamental Principles

JPR1-63122

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Anirhudda, Master of Supernatural Vision

Munakata, Shiko

Anirhudda, Master of Supernatural Vision

JPR1-63127

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Upāli, Master of Vinaya, the Monastic Rules

Munakata, Shiko

Upāli, Master of Vinaya, the Monastic Rules

JPR1-63126

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Pūrnamaitrāyanīputra, Master of Teaching

Munakata, Shiko

Pūrnamaitrāyanīputra, Master of Teaching

JPR1-63125

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Subhūti, Master of the Immaterial

Munakata, Shiko

Subhūti, Master of the Immaterial

JPR1-63123

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Maudgalyāyana, Master of Supernatural Forces

Munakata, Shiko

Maudgalyāyana, Master of Supernatural Forces

JPR1-63121

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Śāriputra, Master of Wisdom

Munakata, Shiko

Śāriputra, Master of Wisdom

JPR1-63119

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Rāhula, Master of the Esoteric

Munakata, Shiko

Rāhula, Master of the Esoteric

JPR1-63117

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Ananda, Master of Memory and Learning

Munakata, Shiko

Ananda, Master of Memory and Learning

JPR1-63116

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Mañjuśri, Incarnation of Buddha’s Wisdom

Munakata, Shiko

Mañjuśri, Incarnation of Buddha’s Wisdom

JPR1-63115

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Our Benefactor in the Sea

Munakata, Shiko

Our Benefactor in the Sea

JPR1-63104

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Our Benefactor in the Mountains

Munakata, Shiko

Our Benefactor in the Mountains

JPR1-63103

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Purple Sleeves of my Love

Munakata, Shiko

Purple Sleeves of my Love

JPR1-63100

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