Tokyo Art & Photography exhibition, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

Japanese art is a big influence on Zena & Rose’s patterns.  I visited the Tokyo exhibition at the start of January to see traditional and new artwork side by side. One of my favourite series of prints was One Hundred Views of New Tokyo, produced 1928 to 1932. This series of woodblock prints was created by eight artists as a response to Tokyo’s recovery from a devastating earthquake in 1923. The prints celebrate modern scenes and architecture, as well as harking back to the artist Hiroshige’s 1858 series One Hundred Famous Views of Edo (the old name of Tokyo).

Further into the exhibition were more 19th and early 20th century prints featuring characters and scenes from Tokyo life, such as Kabuki actors and courtesans. At the end was a display dedicated to the 1960s pop-art movement which produced several internationally famous artists from Japan such as Yokoo Tadanori.

Until next time creative crew,


TheatreKabuzika Theatre at Night, 1930, by Fujimori Shizuo

MitsukeUshigome Mitsuke, 1929-32 by Henmi Takashi

KabukiThe Kabuki Actor Ichikawa Kuzo II, 1856, by Utagawa Kuniyoshi

courtesanThe Courtesan Usugumo of Tamaya Brothel, c.1835 by Utagawa Kuniyoshi

pop artPoster by Yakoo Tadanori