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Dyeing Elegance: Asian Modernism and the Art of Kuboku and Hisako Takaku

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Dyeing Elegance: Asian Modernism and the Art of Kuboku and Hisako Takaku

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Textile artist Takaku Kuboku (1908-1993) is a paragon among modern artists of Japan, fusing rural and urban, traditional and innovative, and Asian and European influences in his life and work. This volume introduces his aesthetic ideas and artistic practice to an English-speaking audience for the first time.

In a milieu where artists championed indigenous craft techniques as a vital component of authentic Asian artistic achievement, he specialized in wax-resist textile dyeing, or roketsuzome. His works on silk were among the most highly sought-after by the elite classes of Japanese society. With his daughter Hisako (b. 1944) he produced obi and kimono that combine the Japanese aesthetic of spontaneous inkbrush painting with modern Cubist and abstract designs, while maintaining ties with traditional Japanese painting. The subjects are predominantly drawn from nature, with a spiritual undertone indicating an awareness of and sensitivity to the idea of a life force that courses through and unifies all living things.

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