Sep 26, 2022
The time and dedication that it takes to make mokuhanga is well known. And if it isn't then it really should be. It feels that it's easy to follow social media, and watch the pretty prints come out of nowhere, but behind all those nice pictures is a lot of hard work, and dedication.
One person who is a prime example of this hard work, dedication and passion for the craft, is Lucy May Schofield. Based in England, Lucy has been making mokuhanga for some time. She has travelled the world, using her environment, and her passion to create mokuhanga that is expressive and powerful.
On this episode of The Unfinished Print, I speak with Lucy about how she discovered mokuhanga, her time at MI Lab, Lucy's love of bokashi, and her mokuhanga relationships; those that have helped her along the way. Lucy also speaks on the Mokuhanga Sisters Collective, how grants and scholarships assist in Lucy's artistic pursuits, as well as how her other artistic endeavours affect her mokuhanga. Lucy's is a story which explores independence, pilgrimage, freedom, and how it affects a persons life.
Artists works follow after the note about them.
Notes: may contain a hyperlink. Simply click on the highlighted word or phrase.
Artists works follow after the note.
Rebecca Salter - is the President of The Royal Academy of Arts, in London, England. She is also an artist who has written two books about Japanese woodblock printing, Japanese Woodblock Printing (2001), and Japanese Popular Prints (2006). She worked with the Satō Woodblock Print Workshop, documenting their process. Her interview with The Unfinished Print can be found, here.
Untitled 2015-14 (2015)
Royal Academy of Arts - is an English art institution which as been in operation for 250 years. More info, here.
Fukuoka, Prefecture, Japan - is a Prefecture in the second most southern part of the Japanese archipelago. It is known for is temples, hot springs, and natural beauty. Fukuoka tourist website, here.
kotatsu - is a low table, electrically heated by an internal heater underneath the table itself, more info, here.
Munakata Shikō (志功棟方) - (1903-1975) arguably one of the most famous modern printmakers, Shiko is famous for his prints of women, animals, the supernatural, and Buddhist deities. He made his prints with an esoteric fervour where his philosophies about mokuhanga were just as interesting as his print work.
Hizakura no Saku (1978) colour lithograph
New Year Card - called nengajo (年賀状) in Japanese, these cards have been traditionally passed from person to person since the Heian Period (794-1185). Mokuhanga practitioners make them as well, creating a new one every year focusing on the zodiac sign of the year as a theme.
shina - is a type of wood used in mokuhanga. It is part of the linden family of trees. This wood is produced in various parts of the world, such as Japan and Russia. Not all shina is created equal so buyer beware.
magnolia wood - a straight grained hard wood located in North America and Asia. more info, here.
washi paper - (和紙) is a type of Japanese paper made with the fibres of either gampi, mitsumata, or mulberry. It is versatile and can be used in many ways.
International Mokuhanga Conference - is a bi-yearly conference dedicated to mokuhanga which started in 2011 by the International Mokuhanga Association. Each conference is themed. The latest conference was in 2021, delayed a year because of the pandemic. More information can be found, here.
Ralph Kiggell (1960-2022) - was one of the most important mokuhanga practitioners. Originally from England, Ralph lived and worked in Thailand. Ralph pushed the boundaries of mokuhanga with extremely large pieces, jigsaw carving, and by using fantastic colour. He also worked with the International Mokuhanga Conference to promote mokuhanga around the world. He will be greatly missed. Ralph's work can be found, here. His obituary in The Guardian can be found, here. His interview with The Unfinished Print can be found, here.
Pool Diver (1996)
Keiko Hara - is an artist who works, and teaches in Walla Walla, Washington. She is a painter, and printmaker in various relief mediums, such as mokuhanga.
MI Lab - is a mokuhanga residency located in Kawaguchi-ko, near Mount Fuji. More info can be found, here.
Katsutoshi Yuasa - is a printmaker and artist based in Tokyo, Japan. His work tends to be large scale, and created through photography, bits, and focuses on the overall "image" itself. His interview with The Unfinished Print can be found, here. website, Instagram
I-know-not-what (2022) oil-based mokuhanga
kirazruri - is a style of printing which uses mica to give a silver, glittering tone to the print. Mica is used as a lovely addition to your print. You can find more information, here.
Hiroki Satake - is a mokuhanga printmaker, and instructor based in Japan. He has taught at MI Lab, as well as given demonstrations regarding tool sharpening, around the world.
Carol Wilhide Justin - is a mokuhanga printmaker based in London, England. Her work focuses on the natural world and the process of making mokuhanga. Carol's interview with The Unfinished Print can be found, here.
Tochigi, Prefecture - is a Japanese Prefecture sandwiched between Saitama, Ibaraki, Fukushima, and Gunma Prefectures. It is famous for its autumnal leaves, temples, and UNESCO World Heritage Site, Nikkō. More info, here.
Nishijin - is an area in Fukuoka City known for its shopping district.
inaka (田舎) - is a Japanese word for “country-side.”
Kurokawa Onsen (黒川温泉) - is a hot spring town located on the island of Kyushu, near Mount Aso, the largest active volcano in Japan. It is famous of its traditional style inns, hot springs, baths, and food. More info, here.
Beppu (別府市) - is a hot spring town located in Kyushu. More info, here.
matsuri (祭り）- is the Japanese word for “festival.” Japan is a country famous of it’s festivals. Each Prefecture, city, town, municipality has a special festival for their area, connected to the seasons, gods, or harvests.
Itoshima (糸島市) - is a city in Fukuoka Prefecture, popular for its beaches, surfing, and nature.
Northumberland, Britain - is a county located in the northernmost area of Britain. It shares a border with Scotland. It is known for its nature, industry, castles, and history. https://www.visitnorthumberland.com
cyanotype - a type of work which uses iron compounds, and when exposed to UV light creates various blues. More info, here.
Indigo dyeing - made famous in the Edo Period (1603-1968), indigo dyeing has been a part of Japanese handicrafts for a long time. Shikoku is famous for it, towns such as Mima, Wakimachi, Tokushima, amongst others continue to produce hand dyed garments of indigo.More info can be found, here, and here.
Awagami - is arguably the largest paper making company in Japan at the moment. With a large International name, Awagami sponsors, and promotes its paper all over the world. More information can be found on its website, here.
88 Temple Pilgrimage - associated with the Buddhist priest Kōbō Daishi (Kūkai) [774-835]. It is one of the few circular pilgrimages in the world. You can walk, or drive the pilgrimage. You can also see it in parts, called kuguri-uchi. Essentially you can walk this pilgrimage in order, backwards or frontwards as they are all temples associated with Kūkai. If you do make the pilgrimage by foot, it is a commitment, but extremely rewarding. Pilgrims are called ō-henro. More info, here.
Ō-settai - are gifts, such as lodging, food, money, or clothing. They are given by non-pilgrims to pilgrims on they journey of the 88 Temples. More info can be found, here.
QEST - is the Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust, and is given to British craftspeople who are given money to pursue training and education in their specific field and medium. More info, here.
kōzo - is a paper made from the bark of the mulberry bush. It is used in mokuhanga frequently, and comes in various weights.
YInMn - is a blue colour discovered by Professor Mas Subramanian in 2009.
Helen Frankenthaler (1928-2011) - was an American abstract impressionist painter who enjoyed experimenting, discovering new ways of expression through paint. More info, here.
Echizen - is a region in Fukui Prefecture, Japan associated with Japanese paper making. It has a long history of paper making. There are many paper artisans in the area. One famous person is Iwano Ichibei whom Megan mentions in this episode. He is a Living National Treasure in paper making, and the ninth generation of his family still making paper today. More info can be found here in English, and here in Japanese.
Paul Furneaux - is a Scottish born mokuhanga printmaker and teacher who uses the medium of mokuhanga in order to create pieces of work that are third dimensional, and abstract.
The Mokuhanga Sisters - are a mokuhanga collective consisting of Yoonmi Nam, Mariko Jesse, Lucy May Schofield, Melissa Schulenberg, Kate MacDonagh, Katie Baldwin, Mia-O, Patty Hudak, and Natasha Norman. Instagram
Yasuyuki Sato - is the Chair of Center for the Science of Human Endeavor/CfSHE, and Director of the Mokuhanga Conference.
Yoonmi Nam (b. 1974) - is a contemporary mokuhanga printmaker, lithographer, sculptor, and teacher, based in Lawrence, Kansas. Her work can be found, here. Her interview with The Unfinished Print can be found, here.
More Beer...For Instance (2013)
Raft (shore) #2 (2013)
Mariko Jesse - is an illustrator, and mokuhanga printmaker based in Tōkyō, London, and California. Her work can be found, here. Mariko is also a part of the collective, wood+paper+box, which can be found, here.
Between Times - folded screen with mokuhanga
wood+paper+box - is a collaborative art group made up of Katie Baldwin, Mariko Jesse, and Yoonmi Nam. It is based on their experiences at Nagasawa Art Park, the precursor of MI Lab.
Patty Hudak - is an American artist who splits her time between Vermont and NYC, who works in installation, and mokuhanga. She has travelled the world, and is a part of three artist collectives. Patty's interview with The Unfinished Print can be found, here.
Force of Nature 1
Melissa Schulenberg - is a woodblock printmaker and professor of Art and Art History at St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY. Some of her work can be found on her website, here.
Boom 2 (2019)
Newcastle University - is a public research university located in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, Britain.
London College of Printing - now called the London College of Communication, is an art college associated with the University of the Arts London.
Toshio Sayama - is an instructor at MI Lab as well as on the MI Lab Committee Board.
nori - is a type of paste made from starch. It is usually used when making mokuhanga. You can make nori from any type of material made of starch. For instance, paste can be made with tapioca, rice, corn, even potato. You can purchase nori pretty much anywhere but making it is more environmentally friendly. Laura Boswell has a great recipe, here.
bokashi - is a Japanese term associated with the gradation of water into ink. There are several types of bokashi. For more information regarding these types of bokashi please check out Professor Claire Cuccio's lecture called “A Story in Layers,” for the Library of Congress, and the book Japanese Printmaking by Tōshi Yoshida, and Rei Yuki. Below are the following types of bokashi. This is from the Yoshida book:
ichimonji bokashi - straight line gradation
ichimonji mura bokashi - straight line gradation with an uneven edg.
Ō-bokashi - a gradual shading over a wide area
atenashi bokashi - gradation without definition
futairo bokashi - two tone gradation
Utamaro - A Prelude To Desire Series - is a series created by Kitagawa Utamaro (1750-1806) in 1799. His designs changed the whole perspective of shunga, erotic prints. Below is as print as designed by Utamaro and Lucy's self-produced print, Prelude To Desire IV.
shunga (春画)- is a type of mokuhanga which is connected with the ukiyo-e period of the Japanese print. The theme is sexuality, whether male-female, or male-male. Many print designers helped to create these prints, and were very popular.
Utagawa Hiroshige (1797-1858) - born in Edo, Hiroshige is famous for his landscape series of that burgeoning city. The most famous series being, One Hundred Famous Views of Edo (1856-1859), and the landcape series, Fifty-Three Stations of the Tōkaidō (1833-1834). His work highlights bokashi, and bright colours. More info about his work can be found, here.
Ōmayagashi - from One Hundred Famous Views of Edo
Northumberland National Park - is a park in Northumberland , England. It is considered a “dark skies” park where the night sky is preserved by having no artificial lighting in the area.
Holbein - is a pigment company with offices located in Japan, The United States, and Canada. They offer high end gouache, watercolour, and pigment pastes.
scrolls - called kakemono 掛物 or emakimono 絵巻物 in Japanese. These scrolls contain many different types of themes and subjects. More info can be found, here.
The Legend of Gisho
Oak gall - is a type of plant swelling, which can be found in various plants. Oak gall is made by the Gall Wasp. The ink and pigment made form oak gall has been used for centuries.
hanshita - is a thin sheet of gampi paper that is pasted, reverse side, on a piece of wood. This is a guide, carved onto the block and is generally used for the key block and subsequent colour blocks. Methods such as acetate with water based pigment, can also be used rather than the thin gampi paper, which can cause misregistration if not pasted correctly.
Ozuwashi - is a brick and mortar paper store located in the Nihonbashi district of Tōkyō. More info here. You can purchase all types of paper that Lucy mentions ion her interview, such as pansion, and sekishu.
Chine-collé - is a two layered printmaking process where the paper is placed onto an inked metal plated run through a press. More info, here.
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