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Ukiyo-e

Ukiyo-e (浮世絵) is woodblock print art that was popular in Japan in 18th and 19th centuries. It was invented (in single color version) by Moronobu Hishikawa[?] in second half of 17th century.

Ukiyo-e were made with the following procedure:

  • Artist painted drafts for every color
  • According to these drafts, woodblocks were made. Drafts were destroyed in the process
  • Woodblocks were sequencially impressed onto paper. After impressing all woodblocks, the final print were obtained.

Ukiyo-e were relatively cheap way of making major amounts of images. They were meant for mainly townsmen, who weren't usually rich enough to hire a painter. Primary subject of Ukiyo-e was city live. Later landscapes became popular.

Ukiyo-e were source of inspiration for many European impressionist painters.

Most important Ukiyo-e artist are:

Sample Ukiyo-e are available on pages of individual artists.



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