Oil on linen
100 x 87 cm, shaped stretcher
This work is a reinterpretation of ukiyo e prints, with the original printed forms (mulberry wood blocks printed on flat paper) being in conflict with the painting’s recurved surface. Registered flat printing blocks would not work to print an image on a curved surface.
It also plays compositional games with rectangles overlapping and in the teapot of the title sited over a cup with an inference that the stillness is about to be unsettled by a pouring of tea. A result of this subject is to imply a vertical relationship and set a pictorial space against which other elements are interpreted as existing, creating an order in the elements.
The seminal influence of Japanese art on European art arises after Japan opened up to the west in the late 1850’s. The renaissance tradition was confronted with developed forms of art using flat colour filled forms and unconventional compositions and depictions of space.
New trends emerged. Strong influences are seen in Van Gogh, the Nabi’s, Egon Schiele, and Toulouse Lautrec.
The western tradition of art understood Japanese art by studying it through copying works and mark making techniques and not by reference to the underlying tradition and ideas. The underlying tradition and ideas are not often referred to.