Wednesday 26 January, 2022
12:30pm GMT - 2:00pm GMT
Koto Sadamura (Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Fellow, Sainsbury Institute)
About the talk
Kawanabe Kyōsai (1831–1889) was one of the most celebrated Japanese painters of the late nineteenth century. He had his initial and brief training with Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1798–1861) in the world of ukiyo-e, popular art form of townspeople, but he was primarily trained as an academic painter in a Kano studio, the Tokugawa government’s official painter school. Reflecting his mixed artistic background and his inexhaustible desire to learn from new and old, Kyōsai’s art demonstrates an incredibly wide range, both in subject matters and styles, and a unique eclecticism amalgamating serious painting techniques with the popular tradition of topical, comic and satirical pictures.
In March–June 2022, the Royal Academy of Arts will hold the exhibition: Kyōsai: The Israel Goldman Collection. This will be the first major exhibition on the artist in the UK in nearly 30 years. As the lead curator of the exhibition, the speaker will give an outline of the show, introduce the Goldman Collection which is the world’s richest collection of the artist’s works, and share some of her experiences of researching and curating Kyōsai.
About the speaker
Koto Sadamura is a Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Fellow at the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Arts and Cultures (2021–2022), and a Visiting Researcher in the Department of Asia, British Museum (since 2016). She received her PhD from the Department of Comparative Literature and Culture, University of Tokyo, with the thesis ‘Kawanabe Kyōsai (1831–1889) and Kyōga: Exploring a New Era through Comic Pictures’ (2020). Main publications include Kyōsai: The Israel Goldman Collection (London: Royal Academy of Arts, 2022), Kyōsai’s Animal Circus (London: Royal Academy of Arts, 2022), Kyōsai Shunga: From the Israel Goldman Collection (co-authored by Aki Ishigami, Kyoto: Seigensha, 2017), and ‘Return of the Demons: The Power of Kyōsai’s Brush’ in Manga: The Citi Exhibition (London: Thames & Hudson, 2019).
Image credit: Kawanabe Kyōsai, A Beauty in Front of King Enma’s Mirror, 1871–89 (1887?), hanging scroll: ink, colour and gold on silk, 35.3 x 52 cm. Israel Goldman Collection, London. Photo: Art Research Center, Ritsumeikan University.