Kiyoshi Saitō

About Artist: Kiyoshi Saitō (Saitō Kiyoshi?, April 27, 1907 – November 14, 1997, born in Aizubange, Fukushima), was a sōsaku hanga artist in 20th-century Japan. In 1938, he issued his first prints in his now famous "Winter in Aizu" series. Saito was one of the first Japanese printmaking artists to have won at the São Paulo Biennale in 1951. Saitō's early works depict villages populated with local Japanese with a high degree of realism and three-dimensionality. His more mature works merge modern elements with Japanese tradition. His prints feature architecture and plant life flattened in two-dimensionality. He spent time in Paris, and did a series there.Kiyoshi Saito's incredibly beautiful and highly unusual woodblock - woodcut prints are displayed in a museum dedicated to him alone - the Yanaizu Municipal Saito Kiyoshi Museum (in Japan), and in many other galleries and museums, including the following: Cincinnati Art Museum, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Achenbach Foundation for the Graphic Arts, San Francisco, New York Public Library, Art Institute of Chicago, Fukushima Prefectural Museum of Art, Kanagawa Prefectural Museum. His work was exhibited at the Salon Printemps in 1948, and in 1951 he received first prize for Steady Gaze at the inaugural Sao Paolo Bienniale. Influenced by Piet Mondrian, Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Gauguin, Odilon Rodin and Edvard Munch - among other famous artists, his amazingly unique images combine traditional Japanese elements with Modern, Cubist, Abstract and Impressionist qualities. Early on he used katsura wood to draw, then carve his images; later, when katsura wood became scarce, he changed to shina nuki. He preferred mulberry paper, or Echizen Hosho, for printing. An inspired artist, with amazing talents, his works of art are timeless, and extraordinarily magnificent.

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