Contemporary Japanese prints Noda Tetsuya’s ‘Diary’ series 

5. Apr - 5. Oct 14 / ends in 13 days British Museum

Exhibition | Prints | London


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Noda Tetsuya, Diary: Aug. 22nd ’68. Printed 1969, colour woodblock and silkscreen. Asia 2014,3001.1, given by the Artist.

Noda Tetsuya, Diary: Aug. 22nd ’68. Printed 1969, colour woodblock and silkscreen. Asia 2014,3001.1, given by the Artist.



Since the late 1960s, artist Noda Tetsuya (born 1940) has created an on-going series of prints under the title, ‘Diary’. Intimate portraits of his family, landscapes experienced on his travels and objects from everyday life are recorded with sensitivity, wit and a certain mystery. Spanning almost fifty years and now reaching some five hundred works, the Diary series shows from within one individual’s world, with evocative perspectives onto a wider society.

This special display presents twenty-two of Noda’s Diary prints, works that span his life and career. The unusual technique of the prints combines colour woodblock with photo silkscreen. Noda cuts woodblocks to print areas of colour and subtle shades of white background onto handmade Japanese paper. Photographic images which have been deliberately altered by the artist to express his personal sensibility are then printed over the colours using silkscreen. This adds the darker outlines and areas of shading. Noda describes the camera as his sketchbook, using it to fix the compositions that are most significant to him. Noda’s everyday subjects and colour and outline style sometimes recall traditional Japanese ukiyo-e prints, with their observation of everyday-life, frankness and absence of ostentation.

Recent Noda acquisitions have been generously donated by the artist and also funded by the JTI Japanese Acquisition Fund.


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