Past Exhibition

Tetsuro Komai Works from the Fukuhara Collection

November 11 – December 14, 2003
Approcimately 150 works from the Fukuhara Collection* by Tetsuro Komai (1920-1976), a pionnering contemporary printmaker known for his lyrical and poetic copperplate printing techniques, will be exhibited at the Shiseido Gallery. The exhibition will include original etchings and aquatints, as well as works done for books.

Tetsuro Komai was born into a merchant family in Nihonbashi, Tokyo. He was well acquainted with the arts since childhood and started learning copperplate printing and drawing under serious training from the age of 15. Komai continued on to study at the Department of Oil Painting at the Tokyo Bijutsu Gakko (the present Art Department of the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music) and attained a variety of copperplate printing techniques. Komai produced unique copperplate prints, which at the time was still an unfamiliar genre in Japan, and received various awards including one at the first São Paulo Biennale in 1951. Until he died at the young age of 56 in 1976, Komai trained his successors and endeavored to develop the field of contemporary prints.
In this exhibition, approximately 150 works will be shown, highlighting the accomplishments of Komai and simultaneously bringing to light the characteristics of the Fukuhara Collection.
The Fukuhara Collection includes many color copperplate prints and colored monotypes, which comprises only 20% of the entirety of Komai's oeuvre. The Fukuhara Collection is significant in the sense that it sheds light on the aspect of "color" in Tetsuro Komai, who has long been recognized for his single-color (black) prints and has been hailed as the "master of black and white forms." This collection also covers a wide range of techniques, revealing the artist's multifaceted and multi-layered oeuvre. The collection, which has continued to trace the development of the artist, continues to expand even after his death.

The exhibition will focus on the charm of Komai's works, which were gathered quietly yet passionately through Yoshiharu Fukuhara's keen eyes as a collector for a period of over 40 years. This will also be an occasion to view the social value of a significant private collection as it came to be accepted by a larger public over the course of time. The Fukuhara Collection is currently being entrusted to the Setagaya Art Museum and is shown to the public as part of the permanent collection.
Coincidentally, this year marks the 50th anniversary since Komai held his first solo show at the Shiseido Gallery. Although the gallery has changed drastically in its appearance since then, this exhibition will be an opportunity to recognize anew the unchanging philosophy of the gallery, which is to inherit tradition and to pursue the spirit of innovation.

*The Fukuhara Collection is a collection of Tetsuro Komai's works that have been collected for a period of over 40 years by Shiseido's Honorary Chairman, Yoshiharu Fukuhara. The Setagaya Art Museum is entrusted with the collection since 2000.

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