Man in Armor (Yoroi hito)

Artist: Hideo Hagiwara 萩原英雄 (1913-2007)
Historical period(s)
Showa era, 1962
Ink and color on paper
H x W (image): 35.5 x 59 cm (14 x 23 1/4 in)
Credit Line
Gift of Margot Paul Ernst in memory of Mr. and Mrs. Norman S. Paul
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Woodblock print

Japan, Showa era (1926 - 1989)
Provenance research underway.

Recognizing the nuances made possible by controlling the absorption of ink on thick Japanese paper, Hagiwara developed innovative methods of woodblock printing. For this abstract image, he created the light-gray textured ground by printing the back of the paper with an opaque dark gray pigment; the color has bled through the paper in patterns that reflect the circular movements of the rubbing tool known as the baren. Metal coils, which were substituted for the supple, plaited bamboo usually used in fabricating the baren, intensified the marks of pressure on the paper. The red color is printed on the face of the paper.

Hagiwara's expansion of the limits of woodblock printing through technical innovation was inspired by his admiration for the achievements of potters of the Jomon culture in Japan (10,000-ca. 300 B.C.E.) studying the complex designs produced by the ancient artisans, Hagiwara sought to understand their mastery of material and technique.

Published References
  • Ann Yonemura. Beyond the Brush: Japanese Prints, Paper Works and Photographs. vol. XLIII no. 3. p. 35, fig. 9.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Whistler's Neighborhood
Google Cultural Institute
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