Contemporary Japanese Prints, Handmade Ceramics & Jewelry, Japanese Antiques, California Artists & Sculptors


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 HIRATSUKA Yuji                                                            

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HIRATSUKA Yuji


HIRATSUKA, Yuji

Born: 1954 in Osaka, Japan
Medium: Intaglio with chine colle

A graduate of Tokyo Gakugei University, Hiratsuka came to the United States in 1985 and received masters degrees from both New Mexico State University and Indiana University. He loves teaching, and has been a professor of printmaking at Oregon State University since 1992. The intaglio prints which Mr. Hiratsuka creates represent a fusion of East and West, with roots in both contemporary and traditional art.

Hiratsuka has a distinctive personal style. Most often his subject matter is portraits, but the faces are rendered without eyes or noses. He says this comes from the Zen tradition in art, where both simplicity and suggestion are emphasized. Other elements can be thought of as stemming from traditional Ukiyo-e woodblock prints from the 17th-19th Centuries. They were brightly colored, sometimes humorous, and often featured poster-like caricatures of actors and other famous personalities.

The contemporary influence is seen in his choice of Western-style dress, and such characters as chiropractors or beauticians. In each work, Hiratsuka allows the viewer to see his or her own interpretation in the ambiguous faces, while presenting the figures with an element of wit by using exaggeration and distortion.

The techniques used by Yuji Hiratsuka include etching, drypoint, aquatint, soft ground and roulette on the copper plate. In addition, he may apply a scraper, burnisher or emery paper to enhance the light areas. The plate is printed four separate times with black, yellow, red and blue inks onto thin Japanese Kurotani paper. Before this paper is glued to a stronger ragpaper backing, Hiratsuka will apply hand color tints to the back side of the Kurotani paper. This means that each print in an edition may be quite unique.

Selected Exhibitions:

CWAJ Show, Tokyo-1996 catalog cover artist
Philadelphia, PA--solo show
Guilford, Connecticut--solo show
Kyoto, Japan--solo show
World Print Exhibition, San Francisco
Tuzla, Yugoslavia--Grand Diploma Award
Portland, Oregon--solo show
Elgin, Illinois--Purchase Award
International Graphics Exhibit, Frechen, Germany
Savannah, Georgia--solo show
Miyako Print Exhibit, Osaka--Purchase Award
Colorado Springs--solo show
Seattle, Washington--solo show
Cadaque, Spain--solo show
Mini Print Exhibit, Napa--Purchase Award
Kobe, Japan--solo show
Lodz, Poland--Medal of Honour
Vancouver, British Columbia
Sapporo, Japan
Haggin Museum, Stockton-Purchase Awd.

Selected Collections:
Cincinnati Art Museum
Kaiser Permanente, Denver
Hallmark Cards, Inc., Kansas City
Tokyo Central Museum
Nassau College, Long Island, NY
British Museum, London
Elgin Community College, Illinois
Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts--Fine Art Museums of San Francisco
The Print Club, Philadelphia
Oregon Department of Transportation, Portland
Keystone Junior College, La Plume, PA
State University of New York, Potsdam
International Graphic Arts Foundation, Palmer & Dodge, Boston
New Canaan, Connecticut

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