Japanese artist Takahashi Hiromitsu creates dynamic, colourful prints showing exciting moments in kabuki, Japan’s traditional dance-drama.
Hiromitsu’s striking designs are not portraits of actual actors, but visualisations of famous kabuki roles.
In kabuki, performers wearing elaborate costumes and make-up use stylised movement and song to enact melodramatic stories about love, loyalty and the clash between duty and emotion.
The works recall Japan’s traditional ukiyo-e woodblock actor prints, but are made using a different technique – kappazuri, or stencil printing, originally used for dyeing kimono. This process is complex and labour-intensive and Hiromitsu is one of very few artists working in this way today.
This exhibition showcases a selection of these unusual prints from the Ashmolean's own extensive collection of Hiromitsu's work, generously presented by Philip Harris.
Stencil Prints of Takahashi Hiromitsu
Open From 1 Apr 2023 until 4 Feb 2024
Admission is FREE