T. Amlu?: No. 25
(The Series of New Sign)
Japan, Showa period, 1985
Colour lithograph, 25 x 35 cm, ed. 9/30, 1985, title and signature in pencil, good condition, but with some foxing.
Unknown artist, T. Amlu?
Sosaku hanga (“creative prints”) was an art movement in early 20th-century Japan, formally established with the formation of the Japanese Creative Print Society in 1918.
The sosaku hanga prints were a product of the westernisation of Japan, which had set in with the Meiji period (1868–1912). Japan had called for Western scientists, scholars and artists, and Japanese students went abroad to study Western methods - also in the field of arts.
The sosaku hanga movement adopted the concept of the Western ideal of art as the product of the creativity of one genius – the artist. It thereby stressed the artist as the sole creator motivated by a desire for self-expression, and advocated principles of art that is "self-drawn" (自画 jiga), "self-carved" (自刻 jikoku) and "self-printed"
(自刷 jizuri), as opposed to the traditional hanmoto system.
The subjects and looks of sosaku hanga followed modern Western trends in art with a few exceptions. The 1951 Sao Paolo Art Biennial witnessed the success of the creative print movement, which was also Japan’s first postwar submission to an international exhibition.
Collecting sosaku hanga prints is a small but fine and often expensive market niche. The reason are the usually small edition sizes of sosaku hanga versus shin hanga.