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Current Exhibition

110th anniversary Wasaburo Itozono : Soul Prayer, Silent Message

Sky, Water, Earth and People, 1970, Deposit

 The Western-style painter Wasaburo Itozono was born in Nakatsu City, Oita Prefecture. At 11 years of age, he contracted a serious disease, which crushed his hopes of advancing to secondary and higher education. He moved to Tokyo at the age of 16 and studied oil painting at the Institute (Shajitsu Kenkyusho) run by Kanji Maeta. The Shunyo Art Exhibition in 1930 was the first collective exhibition for which his work was selected. Thereafter, he began to attract special attention as a promising emerging surrealist in the Japanese art world. In 1943, he participated in founding a group named “Shinjinga-kai” in response to a call from Chozaburo Inoue. Even during wartime, he was loyal to his conscience as a painter despite restricted freedom of expression. After the end of WWII, he returned to Nakatsu and continued his artistic creation there. From 1947, he made his works public mainly at exhibitions of Jiyu Bijutsu-ka Kyokai. Poetically depicting the anxiety and loneliness of modern people, his works enjoyed a high reputation and widespread popularity both in Japan and abroad.
 Celebrating the 110th anniversary of Itozono’s birth, this exhibition traces his entire painting career through his representative works, ranging from early and postwar works with strong social messages to poetic and humanistic works in his later years. In addition, the exhibition also displays related materials, including his sketchbooks, in which he developed ideas for his works, and the painting tools he actually used.
 The exhibition will share with you the timeless sincere messages of Itozono, who continued to paint while always watching quietly over society and people.

September 18 - October 31, 2021
Collection Gallery(3rd floor)

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