Japanese Artist inspired by L.S. Lowry: Japanese context of Northern England

Japanese Artist inspired by L.S. Lowry: Japanese context of Northern England

The contemporary Japanese artist, Sawako Utsumi, is deeply moved by the art of L.S. Lowry (original below). Indeed, several art pieces done by Utsumi relate to playing on certain Japanese themes while focusing on the original. Therefore, in her recent art piece titled “Lowry in Japanese color, space, and time,” a more openly Japanese context is added to a greater degree.

This notably applies to space, time, and clarity that are equally visible within Japanese gardens. Equally, certain areas related to quaint angles of Buddhism in the land of the rising sun relate to the importance of space and time. Hence, Utsumi reawakens a sense of her own cultural identity within the original by Lowry that is set in industrial northern England.

All of a sudden, the industrial landscape turns into a scene that exemplifies a natural flow that isn’t constrained by limited space. In other words, the children playing now seem more liberated and at ease in the new environment that is colorful, clean, and not constrained by railings or negative aspects related to industrial northern England.

Equally, the distant industrial angle and gloomy skyline is now transferred by closeness and a sky that equates to freedom. Of course, each individual will see different things and others will see nothing. Yet, for Utsumi, this matters not one jot, providing one other soul connects to her art in a meaningful way that complements the original – while acknowledging the huge transformation based on art, different cultures, and the intentions of Utsumi.

In another article, I state, Hence, the contemporary Japanese artist Utsumi is focusing on individuality, new forces based on the color that will soon emerge, and people content in their natural surroundings. This focus works a treat because old northern England now becomes innovative once more. After all, the Industrial Revolution and modernizing forces came from the same rich history of northern England.”

The freedom related to the children playing in the art piece titled “Lowry in Japanese color, space, and time,” suddenly alters the notion of struggle and limited ambitions based on the daily grind of life. Instead, the colors of the houses relate to new freedoms and defeating the limited opportunities that generations of working-class people face in industrial cities all over the world.

Written by Lee Jay Walker

Please email Sawako Utsumi at sawakoart@gmail.com

BELOW IS A NEW BOOK BASED ON THE ART OF SAWAKO UTSUMI

Book Review: Sawako Utsumi and her Kindred Spirit

European and Japanese Art: Buddhism, Christianity, Landscapes, Rinpa, Shintoism, Ukiyo-e, and Dutch Masters

http://www.lulu.com/shop/lee-jay-walker/sawako-utsumi-and-her-kindred-spirit/paperback/product-22830732.html – Please click on to order the book.

http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sawako-utsumi.html – Sawako Utsumi and where you can buy her art, postcards, bags, and other products. Also, individuals can contact her for individual requests.

https://fineartamerica.com/featured/lowry-in-japanese-color-space-and-time-sawako-utsumi.html

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/japanese-whispers-in-respect-of-lowry-sawako-utsumi.html

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/lowry-and-shadow-of-japan-sawako-utsumi.html

https://fineartamerica.com/featured/lowry-in-full-japanese-bloom-sawako-utsumi.html

http://sawakoart.com – Sawako Utsumi personal website

Contemporary Japanese Artist and L.S. Lowry: Distance, Light, and Ideas

Contemporary Japanese Artist and L.S. Lowry: Distance, Light, and Ideas

Sawako Utsumi hails from northern Japan and she is a contemporary Japanese artist, who equally adores art from the distant past. True to the nature of Utsumi, her art focuses on the rich traditions of old Japan, while focusing on a broad spectrum of European artists. However, when it comes to L.S. Lowry (1887-1976), it is apparent that a different light separates her deep admiration of Lowry.

This light not only applies to color, perspectives, breaking down the barriers of the industrial and working-class landscape that inspired Lowry – but also to a spiritual dimension that relates to cultural norms in her native Japan. Hence, in her latest art piece titled “Lowry in full Japanese bloom,” the houses come alive based on new light. Similarly, individuals in the street setting break the initial impressions of the original.

In a sense, it is easy to overstate the negativity of distant industrial northern England. Equally, in the opposite direction, some individuals can focus on nostalgia related to strong communities, the bedrock of the family, the political non-conformist Christian churches demanding rights, a potent trade union movement tackling the economic and political class, and other areas related to this period of British history.

Hence, the contemporary Japanese artist Utsumi is focusing on individuality, new forces based on the color that will soon emerge, and people content in their natural surroundings. This focus works a treat because old northern England now becomes innovative once more. After all, the Industrial Revolution and modernizing forces came from the same rich history of northern England.

In a past article, I state, “The contrast of the originals by Lowry – to the creativity of Utsumi – creates a natural state of mind that highlights the difference in time and perspectives. In the world of Lowry, you had hard working people battling against the reality of industrialization, pollution, and poverty. However, for Utsumi, while acknowledging that poverty still persists in modern Japan and the United Kingdom; the neon lights of Tokyo to the comforting rural areas of the Sendai region provides hope.”

Overall, the new art piece by Utsumi – who is inspired by the rich artistic legacy of Lowry – is inspirational in relation to the visual reality and the deeper meaning behind her art.

Lee Jay Walker

Please email Sawako Utsumi at sawakoart@gmail.com

BELOW IS A NEW BOOK BASED ON THE ART OF SAWAKO UTSUMI

Book Review: Sawako Utsumi and her Kindred Spirit

European and Japanese Art: Buddhism, Christianity, Landscapes, Rinpa, Shintoism, Ukiyo-e, and Dutch Masters

http://www.lulu.com/shop/lee-jay-walker/sawako-utsumi-and-her-kindred-spirit/paperback/product-22830732.html – Please click on to order the book.

http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sawako-utsumi.html – Sawako Utsumi and where you can buy her art, postcards, bags, and other products. Also, individuals can contact her for individual requests.

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/japanese-whispers-in-respect-of-lowry-sawako-utsumi.html

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/lowry-and-shadow-of-japan-sawako-utsumi.html

https://fineartamerica.com/featured/lowry-in-full-japanese-bloom-sawako-utsumi.html

http://sawakoart.com – Sawako Utsumi personal website

Japan Artist and Nichiren the Buddhist Preacher: Trilogy of Exile in the Snow on Sado Island

Japan Artist and Nichiren the Buddhist Preacher: Trilogy of Exile in the Snow on Sado Island

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

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Nichiren (1222-1282) is one of the most famous Buddhist teachers to emanate from Japan. Yet, he was very outspoken during his lifetime and this led him to be exiled and embroiled in the political processes of his day – irrespective if intended or unintended. Therefore, the contemporary Japanese artist Sawako Utsumi focuses on a trilogy of Nichiren during his exile on Sado Island.

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The wintry theme of the trilogy is meant to endorse the harshness of Nichiren’s exile. Despite this, it is clear that the first art piece is based on serenity and peaceful contemplation. Intriguingly, the second art piece focuses on the start of his bleak journey but solace can be seen in the background based on prior human contact. However, the third art piece depicts Nichiren against the harsh and bleak wintry conditions of Sado Island, whereby his exile looks treacherous.

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Yet, if you go back to the first art piece titled Buddhist Cleric Nichiren in Exile and Homage to Yoshitoshi, then clearly Nichiren is at peace in the mountains. Hence, the second art piece titled Exiled Buddhist Cleric Nichiren in the Snow and the third art piece of the trilogy titled Buddhist Cleric Nichiren and Bleak Winter in Exile, are actually in the wrong order. This is based on Utsumi focusing on reality and unreality alongside the actualities of life itself. After all, often moving forward becomes firmly based on taking a backward step because the smaller things in life are now being negated based on greater ambitions. Indeed, many a politician, for example, succumbed to power and wealth – similarly, many families and friends become torn apart – or soon to be mere shadows – based on the natural causes and effects of capitalism, modernity, new relationships, and so forth.

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Turning back to Nichiren, then I state in a past article that, “Nichiren, himself, was very independent because he believed firmly that the true path lay within his teachings based on his knowledge of the written word. This holy Buddhist cleric made many enemies based on rebuking other Buddhist schools of thought. Yet, passion, the search for truth, questioning concepts deemed false, challenging authority, equally adhered people to Nichiren.”

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The Buddhist teacher Nichiren said, “Worthy persons deserve to be called so because they are not carried away by the eight winds: prosperity, decline, disgrace, honor, praise, censure, suffering, and pleasure. They are neither elated by prosperity nor grieved by decline. The heavenly gods will surely protect one who is unbending before the eight winds.”

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In the trilogy by Utsumi, her focus is on “the seen” and “unseen.” Likewise, the time of life is not based on natural phenomenon but the spirituality of Nichiren. Hence, the timeline is incorrect because like wisdom, knowledge, virtue, and other noble ideas, then these can come and flow from all individuals at such a short notice. In other words, many a bad person did good things – and many a good person did evil, and so forth. Therefore, moments in time, perceptions, cultural aspects to individuals, and other important areas, are really illusionary based on the multi-dimensions of this world.

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Overall, Utsumi, in her trilogy of Nichiren and his exile on the beautiful island of Sado Island, is based on a complex approach to what is deemed to be the reality of life. Also, and especially powerful, even when a person is abandoned it doesn’t mean that weakness and decline will follow. Therefore, the wintry theme and the trilogy of her art pieces are focused on many dimensions that will have different meanings to the respective viewer of her art.

Lee Jay Walker

BELOW IS A NEW BOOK BASED ON THE ART OF SAWAKO UTSUMI

sawako-book-3

Book Review: Sawako Utsumi and her Kindred Spirit

European and Japanese Art: Buddhism, Christianity, Landscapes, Rinpa, Shintoism, Ukiyo-e, and Dutch Masters

http://www.lulu.com/shop/lee-jay-walker/sawako-utsumi-and-her-kindred-spirit/paperback/product-22830732.html – Please click on to order the book.

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/exiled-buddhist-cleric-nichiren-in-the-snow-sawako-utsumi.html – Exiled Buddhist Cleric Nichiren in the Snow

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/buddhist-cleric-nichiren-in-exile-and-homage-to-yoshitoshi-sawako-utsumi.html Buddhist Cleric Nichiren in Exile and Homage to Yoshitoshi

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/buddhist-cleric-nichiren-and-bleak-winter-in-exile-sawako-utsumi.html Buddhist Cleric Nichiren and Bleak Winter in Exile

http://sawakoart.com

 

Japanese Artist and Nichiren Buddhism: Exile in the Snow on Sado Island

Japanese Artist and Nichiren Buddhism: Exile in the Snow on Sado Island

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

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The Buddhist holy man called Nichiren (1222-1282) was exiled to Sado Island in his native Japan. This reality was extremely harsh for Nichiren and his followers feared for him. However, Nichiren had faced even worse situations because he faced death based on political intrigues against him. Therefore, true to the nature of Nichiren, his exile to Sado Island created even more noble ways and deepened his spirituality to an even higher level.

Sawako Utsumi, a contemporary artist who hails from northern Japan, not surprisingly is intrigued by the historical legacy of Nichiren – and the reality of exile to Sado Island. Similarly, the landscape of Sado Island and the bleakness of winter appeals to this modern Japanese artist who adores landscape art. Intriguingly, the artist is more in tune to Shintoism, while ancestors will be a mixture of both faiths. After all, the fusions of Buddhism and the Shinto faith dot the landscape and the mindset of this nation despite the impact of secularism and modernization.

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Nichiren, himself, was very independent because he believed firmly that the true path lay within his teachings based on his knowledge of the written word. This holy Buddhist cleric made many enemies based on rebuking other Buddhist schools of thought. Yet, passion, the search for truth, questioning concepts deemed false, challenging authority, equally adhered people to Nichiren.

nichiren11

Nichiren said, When a tree has been transplanted, though fierce winds may blow, it will not topple if it has a firm stake to hold it up.  But even a tree that has grown up in place may fall over if its roots are weak.  Even a feeble person will not stumble if those supporting him are strong, but a person of considerable strength, when alone, may fall down on an uneven path.”

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Utsumi, in her art pieces titled Exiled Buddhist Cleric Nichiren in the Snow and Buddhist Cleric Nichiren in Exile and Homage to Yoshitoshi, shows two completely different situations. The similar themes apply to isolation, the bleakness of nature, wintry conditions, and powerful landscapes that depict the exile of Nichiren. However, one art piece focuses on Nichiren in contemplation and feeling secure despite the wintry conditions he faces. Alternatively, the other art piece shows the brutal reality of the harshness of his exile during the severity of winter.

Therefore, the meaning of both, according to Utsumi, is the many different realities that we face in this lifetime despite much appearing the same. Once more, Utsumi is highlighting the mirage of past artists – while, at the same time, creating new intricacies based on her own stunning art.

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Nichiren said, “If one lights a fire for others, one will brighten one’s own way.”

Alluding to both art pieces by Utsumi highlighted in this article, then the fire of art was lit by others. However, Utsumi brightens up the originals by playing on artistic and philosophical themes that are not easy to comprehend from the naked eye!

Lee Jay Walker

BELOW IS A NEW BOOK BASED ON THE ART OF SAWAKO UTSUMI

sawako-book-3

Book Review: Sawako Utsumi and her Kindred Spirit

European and Japanese Art: Buddhism, Christianity, Landscapes, Rinpa, Shintoism, Ukiyo-e, and Dutch Masters

http://www.lulu.com/shop/lee-jay-walker/sawako-utsumi-and-her-kindred-spirit/paperback/product-22830732.html – Please click on to order the book.

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/exiled-buddhist-cleric-nichiren-in-the-snow-sawako-utsumi.html – Exiled Buddhist Cleric Nichiren in the Snow

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/buddhist-cleric-nichiren-in-exile-and-homage-to-yoshitoshi-sawako-utsumi.html Buddhist Cleric Nichiren in Exile and Homage to Yoshitoshi

http://sawakoart.com

Modern Japanese Artist and Utrillo: Seasonal Change of Notre-Dame de Clignantcourt

Modern Japanese Artist and Utrillo: Seasonal Change of Notre-Dame de Clignantcourt

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

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Notre-Dame de Clignantcourt in the life of Maurice Utrillo (1883-1955) wasn’t a particular historical and famous Christian church in Paris. However, this Catholic place of worship certainly hit a right chord with Utrillo because he painted this scene, from different angles and seasons, on a few occasions. Therefore, the contemporary Japanese artist Sawako Utsumi focuses on this delightful church but based on a completely different season from the painting by Utrillo that she is paying homage to.

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In the passing of time, the spirituality of Christianity would impact on Utrillo (original by Utrillo above) despite his far from traditional upbringing. Indeed, if you apply a fanciful imagination, then it could be said that the changing reality of Notre-Dame de Clignantcourt, within the mindset of Utrillo, is based on the strong connection with his mother and birthright.

Also, familiarity and the power of the Christian faith would bestow a semblance of normality for Utrillo. This is a far cry from his teenage years and the reality of his mother that inflamed contradictory forces within his soul.

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In a past article, I stress “Throughout the life of Utrillo mental asylums became a reality because often he was interned into these institutions. Despite this, Utrillo produced an abundance of stunning art pieces. Indeed, he was rightly awarded the Cross of the Legion d’honneur by the government of France in 1928. Also, by the middle of the 1930s, Utrillo became increasingly religious.”

Utsumi impressively creates a completely different seasonal backdrop to the original by Utrillo. On top of this, the adorable artist who hails from Sendai, Japan, focuses strongly on the central spiritual reality that shaped Utrillo during his lifetime. This reality is based on the union of the Christian church and people walking around is based on a natural reality. In essence, a tinge of Shintoism is being modestly impinged based on the natural order appearing at ease within a modern city.

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Utsumi says, “People are walking in various directions but the church remains the embodiment based on spiritual strength and open to all who seek sanctuary.”

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This Christian sanctuary would steady the Utrillo ship. Similarly, for Utsumi, art and spirituality are areas that provide sanctuary to her in a world that is chaotic. Therefore, the rich color scheme by Utsumi is based on powerful rays of hope that are needed in this life. At the same time, a sense of belonging and communion with the spirit of Utrillo is obtainable based on different reflections.

http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sawako-utsumi.html – Art of Sawako Utsumi and where you can buy her art, postcards, bags, and other products. Also, individuals can contact her for individual requests.

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/utrillo-and-church-seasonal-change-in-paris-by-japanese-artist-sawako-utsumi.html

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/mirage-of-utrillo-sawako-utsumi.html

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/japanese-eyes-and-utrillo-sawako-utsumi.html

http://sawakoart.com