Exhibition dates: 8 October 2014 – 12 January 2015
This exhibition marks the acquisition of 72 works by the artist Samiro Yunoki by the Musée Guimet in Paris (the French National Museum of Asian Arts). The works reflect the variety of his oeuvre, which combines traditional skills with a contemporary vision, as much in terms of the techniques and materials used as the decorative styles and motifs.
Samiro Yunoki was born in Tokyo on 17 October 1922, in the Tabata district, a very popular area with artists and writers. Born into a family of artists, he studied history, art and aesthetics at Tokyo University, though his studies were interrupted by the Second World War. It was only after the war that he began to develop an interest in the textile work of Keisuke Serizawa as well as the traditional craft techniques of Sôetsu Yanagi. In 1947, Yunoki became a student of Serizawa and began to specialise in textile art, and particularly in dyeing. It was Serizawa who taught him how to apply rice paste to create resist-dye designs. In 1950, Yunoki started teaching at the Joshibutsu arts university in Tokyo, of which institution he would become the president in 1987.
Yunoki is a specialist in katazome, literally ‘shape dyeing’ (from ‘kata’, shape, and ‘zome’, dyeing), which refers to the technique of resist dyeing with stencils. Typical of Yunoki’s work is the use of bright colours, in perfect harmony with the texture of the fabric as well as with his imaginative, abstract motifs, so evocative that they almost become figurative. There is great clarity of shape in his work, and a remarkable sense of movement.
For more information, visit the website of the Musée Guimet, Paris.