Full of Autumnal Scent
Stanford Department of Art & Art History presents Full of Autumnal Scent: 10 years of graduate printmaking from Tama Art University, Tokyo, Japan at the Stanford Art Gallery
On view November 1–December 3, 2021
In 2009, the Stanford Bowes Art & Architecture Library began to acquire the annual printmaking portfolios from Tama Art University in Tokyo, Japan. The portfolios feature various print mediums including etching, lithography, woodblock, and screen print created by graduating Tama printmaking students. These artworks are beautiful, technically flawless, and open a window into contemporary Japanese sensibilities. This exhibit represents some of the best works by young printmakers trained in Japan, where printmaking enjoys a venerable and illustrious history.
Curated by Kathryn Kain, Katharine Keller, and Gabriel Harrison
The exhibition consists of a selection of 130 prints covering ten years of artistic production from the overall collection. Nine undergraduate and three graduate prints were chosen from each year. Because of their rarity, they reside in the locked stacks collection, but can be seen here for the first time as an ensemble.
The connection between Tama and Stanford Universities came about due to the friendship of Reiko Oshima, an active member the College Women’s Association of Japan (CWAJ), and Sally Porter, former CWAJ member and docent at the Cantor Art Center. For 65 years CWAJ has provided funding and scholarships for women to study abroad and assists visually impaired men and women, with funds mainly from the CWAJ juried Print Show. This annual exhibit showcases important printmaking artists living in Japan, is held in Tokyo and has traveled to the USA several times.
At Stanford, printmaking has occupied a significant position at the Thomas Welton Stanford Art Gallery since its founding over a century ago. It began with the first director, Pedro de Lemos, a pioneer in the mass education of printmaking in America and a leading figure in art education. His tenure over 30 years transformed the gallery and the university into one of the most important artistic venues in California, in part by co-hosting major traveling exhibitions from the East Coast and by serving as the curator for hundreds of displays of regional artists, many of whom, like himself, were highly distinguished printmakers of the day.
The continuity of excellence in printmaking continues thanks in part to professors including the late Nathan Oliveira and Enrique Chagoya, who have kept this tradition alive at Stanford as a relevant and highly accessible art form.