Hodaka Yoshida

Sosaku Hanga Artist

Japan

Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995) is known for his modern, surreal, mythological, and abstract prints. He is also known as a pioneer and leader of early Japanese modernist printmaking. Hodaka broke the mold of traditional Japanese printmaking by promoting self-expression through sōsaku hanga (creative print movement) and broadening the range of once-confined style and technique. 

Works by Hodaka Yoshida

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Woods B by Hodaka Yoshida

Woods B by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). Sosaku Hanga Japanese woodblock print. A rarely seen design from Hodaka's Woods series depicting an abstract view of a forest. Dated 1954. Signed and titled in pencil by the artist.

Size: 9 3/5" w x 14 4/5: h
Condition: Very good color and impression. Tape remnants to verso.

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Landscape Cancer by Hodaka Yoshida

Landscape Cancer by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). Modern Japanese woodblock print and photoetching. From Hodaka Yoshida's Constellation Series. A beautiful interpretation of the Cancer zodiac sign. Pencil signed, titled and dated. Limited edition print from a series of 100. Dated 1973.

Size: 22" h x 16 1/4" w
Condition: Excellent color and impression. Minor foxing in upper margin, as well as on the bottom left of the image near the title.

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Landscape Gemini by Hodaka Yoshida

Landscape Gemini by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926 - 1995). Modern Japanese print photoetching and woodblock print. Limited edition. Dated 1973. Signed and titled in pencil by the artist. From Hodaka's Constellation Series depicting interpretations of zodiac signs.

SIze: 19 7/8" h x 14 3/4" w
Condition: Very good color and impression.

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Landscape Capricorn by Hodaka Yoshida

Landscape Capricorn by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). Contemporary Japanese woodcut and anastatic print. Limited edition numbered 65 of 100. Signed in pencil by the artist bottom right. Dated 1973.

Size: 22" h x 16 3/8" w 
Condition: Very good color and impression. Slight creasing to margins.

 

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Blue Ceremony by Hodaka Yoshida

Blue Ceremony by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). Abstract Japanese woodblock print. Limited edition numbered 45 of 50. Dated 1963. Signed in pencil bottom right by the artist.

Size: 21" h x 15" w + margins
Condition: Very good color and impression. Slight mat burn. Tape remnants on verso.

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Mask by Hodaka Yoshida

Mask by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). Original Japanese woodblock print depicting a Pre-Columbian mask artifact. This work was part of Hodaka Yoshida' primitive print period which ranged from 1955 to 1963. This period was inspired by a 1955 trip to Mexico and his encounters with the primitive Pre-Columbian artifacts and architecture. Pencil signed and dated by the artisted. Dated 1956.

Size: 22 1/2" h x 16 3/8" w
Condition: Excellent color and detail as shown. Drying holes in top corners. Slight toning, slight soiling and slight creasing at edges. Good overall.

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Mythology in the Sky by Hodaka Yoshida

Mythology in the Sky by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). A photo silkscreen from Hodaka's mythology and landscape period. A beautiful abstract print depicting an intersection of beauty, time and the ongoing journey. Signed, titled and dated in pencil by the artist. Dated 1967. Limited edition of 50.

Size: 22 ¼" h x 17 ½" w
Condition: Overall very good. Some light toning and creasing. Tape remnants to verso.

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Suite in White B by Hodaka Yoshida

Suite in White B by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). Signed, titled and dated in pencil by the artist. Dated 1954. A beautiful abstract composition. A beautiful abstract composition with a dream-like feel.

Size: 11" h x 19 3/4" w (image) + margins as shown
Condition: Good overall. This print has excellent color and detail as shown. Drying holes in right corners. Tiny tear at edge. Toning, creasing and slight soiling at edges, a few spots. Please see photos for details.

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A Road In Evening Black by Hodaka Yoshida

A Road In Evening Black by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). Signed, titled and dated by the artist. Dated 1975. This print comes directly from Ayomi Yoshida (Chizuko & Hodaka's daughter).

Size: 17.3" h x 13.0" w (image)
Condition: Excellent.

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Woods by Hodaka Yoshida

Woods by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). An abstract mid-century Japanese woodblock print depicting the moon over a wooded area by renowned 20th century Japanese artist Hodaka Yoshida. Signed, titled and dated by the artist. Dated 1955. This print comes directly from Ayomi Yoshida (Chizuko & Hodaka's daughter).

Curator's Note:

This is one of my favorite works by Hodaka Yoshida. A tremendous composition capturing the magic of  the forest under the night moon. The colors are rich and the abstract layers to the image leave room for the imagination to make its own conclusions. Most would consider the woods to be a scary place at night, whereas this work makes them inviting and full of energy.

Size: 16 1/2" h x 9 3/4" w (image), 22 1/4" h x 16 3/16" w (sheet)
Condition: Excellent.

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Night by Hodaka Yoshida

Night by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). An abstract mid-century Japanese woodblock print by renowned 20th century Japanese artist Hodaka Yoshida. Signed, titled and dated by the artist. Dated 1954. A beautiful abstract interpretation of the starry night sky. This print comes directly from Ayomi Yoshida (Chizuko & Hodaka's daughter).

Size: 14 4/5" h x 9 4/5" w (image), plus margins
Condition: Excellent.

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Small Universe by Hodaka Yoshida

Small Universe by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). Etching and color woodblock print. Pencil signed by the artist. Limited edition artist's proof. Published in 1965 by the hand of the artist. Print is published on antique-white Japanese paper.

Size: 14 1/4" h x 11 3/4" w (image)
Condition: Excellent.

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Landscape Libra by Hodaka Yoshida

Landscape Libra by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). A Japanese woodblock print depicting a beautiful collage of exotic images interpreting the essence of the Libra Zodiac sign. This print is from Hodaka Yoshida's Constellation Series. The moon is embossed adding to the intrigue of the overall design. Pencil signed, titled and dated by the artist. Limited edition 49 from a series of 100. Dated 1973. Maintains the original sticker on the verso reading: "Libra" (Constellation Series) by Hodaka Yoshida" in Japanese ( Seiza series, Tenbin za).

Size: 14 1/2" w x 19 1/2" h (image). 16 3/8" w x 22" h (paper)
Condition: Excellent.

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Senju Kannon by Hodaka Yoshida

Senju Kannon by Hodaka Yoshida. A beautiful abstract depiction of the Goddess of Mercy. Hodaka uses a contrast of bright colors to offset the darkness of the image. Signed and titled in pencil by the artist. Dated 1954. Provenance: Estate of Jane Griffin, Bethesda, MD.

Size: 15 7/8" h x 11" w
Condition: Very good.

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Buddhist Statues by Hodaka Yoshida

Buddhist Statues by Hodaka Yoshida. An abstract interpretation of buddhist statues. Hodaka makes strong use of white space in this print to center the eyes attention on the impactful figures. Signed and titled in pencil by the artist. Dated 1954. Artist's red chop mark in the bottom left hand corner. Provenance: Estate of Jane Griffin, Bethesda, MD.

Size: 15 7/8" h x 11" w
Condition: Very good.

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A Japanese Legacy Four Generations Of Yoshida Family Artists

A Japanese Legacy Four Generations Of Yoshida Family Artists. Soft Cover. Illustrated.  223 numbered pages. Copyright 2002.  ISBN: 0-912964-87-1.  LCCN: 2001135456.  Published by The Minneapolis Institute Of Arts.

This major exhibition presents over 160 oil paintings, watercolors and woodblock prints by eight artists from a single family spanning four generations and over 100 years. Featured artists include Kasaburo Yoshida, Hiroshi Yoshida, Toshi Yoshida, Hodaka Yoshida, and the Yoshida women: Fujio, Chizuko, Kiso, and Ayomi, with approximately 20 oil paintings, 15 watercolors, and 100 woodblock prints, several sketchbooks, and other supporting photographs. These fine works are drawn from both public and private collections, most notably The Minneapolis Institute of Arts, the Toledo Museum of Art, Margaret and Eugene Skibbe (Minneapolis), the Tokyo National Museum, The Fukuoka Art Museum, and the Yoshida family.The catalogue features essays by Koichi Yasunaga, chief curator at the Fukuoka Art Museum, Kendall Brown, professor at California State, Long Beach, Laura W. Allen of San Francisco, Eugene M. Skibbe of Minneapolis and Matthew Welch, curator of Japanese art at The Minneapolis Institute of Arts. They provide new insights into each artist as well as a broad view of major issues confronting Japanese art in the late 19th and 20th century. The unique perspective of a single family also offers a rare opportunity to examine how family ties impact artistic creation.

Size: 9" w x 11 1/2" h
Condition: Good. Covers with some slight occasional edge scuff.  Book has a very slight wave to it as though it may have been "rolled."  Right side exterior page edges at the upper portion with some small pot staining.

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Ancestor by Hodaka Yoshida

Ancestor by Hodaka Yoshida. This print is part of Hodaka's primitive prints period which was inspired by his travel to the pre-Columbian ruins of Mexico. Pencil signed and titled by the artist. From a limited edition of 50. Dated 1958.

Size: 16" w x 21 1/4" h
Condition: Excellent.

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House and Nude by Hodaka Yoshida

House and Nude by Hodaka Yoshida. This piece is from Hodaka's house-nude series. Printed circa late 1970s, or early 1980s. The prints from this series provide an intriguing juxtaposition between the modern and traditional. The house in the print is from a picture Hodaka took during his travels. He typically used photoetched zinc plates alongside woodblocks for this series.

Size: 18" h x 14 1/8" w
Condition: Good color and impression. Some toning to paper. Slight horizontal crease at the top of the print.

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Untitled Abstract by Hodaka Yoshida

Untitled Abstract by Hodaka Yoshida. Beautiful creative design which trends to be part of his mythology and landscape prints done between 1966-74. This print bears a similarity to the festival, or "kite", design which he printed in 1968. The image is unique, but the colors and intermingling of the design is similar. The print is dated 1968 and is pencil signed by the artist. It's numbered A.P. for artist's proof.

Size: 14" h x 11" w
Condition: Very Good. Slight cut in top left edge of paper in margin.

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Ruins by Hodaka Yoshida

Ruins by Hodaka Yoshida. Part of Hodaka's primitive prints series inspired by his travels to Mexico and the pre-Columbian ruins. Pencil signed and titled by the artist. Dates to 1956. Print is on soft washi paper.

Condition: Good. Very minor toning on edges. The reverse side has a small red spot, not sure if that is part of the print. Creases in the paper.
Size: 11" h x 16" w

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Festival by Hodaka Yoshida

Festival by Hodaka Yoshida. From Hodaka Yoshida's mythology and landscape prints. This print dates to 1968. Hand signed and numbered in pencil in the bottom margin.

Size: 11" w x 14.25" h
Condition: Excellent.

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Study in Black by Hodaka Yoshida

Study in Black by Hodaka Yoshida. A modernist mid-century Japanese woodblock print. This is a 1961 print by the renowned 20th century Japanese artist Hodaka Yoshida. Entitled "Study in Black" (also referred to as "Experiment in Black"), it is listed in Eugene Skibbe’s catalogue of Hodaka’s works as Number 179. 

The print is beautifully executed.  Rendered in dark colors, it is a subtle, moody image. It is signed, titled, dated (1961) and numbered (#9 of an edition of 30) by Yoshida in the lower margin.  

Size: 20” h x 7½” w
Condition: Good. There is minor overall age toning.  There is a small (~1”x1”) piece of archival linen tape on the back in the right upper corner that appears to be reinforcing a small tear, though it doesn’t extend into the image area.

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Plant by Hodaka Yoshida work no longer available

Plant by Hodaka Yoshida (Japan, 1926-1995). Sosaku Hanga Japanese woodblock print. A beautiful abstract work depicting a plant using various tones of yellow, green and earthy browns. An extremely striking composition. Signed and titled in pencil by the artist. Dated 1952.

Size: 9 3/5" w x 14 1/5" h
Condition: Very good.

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Stone Lantern by Hodaka Yoshida work no longer available

Stone Lantern by Hodaka Yoshida. This piece is a strong representation of Hodaka's use of minimalism to communicate the strength in objects and nature. A beautiful work which evokes contrasting emotions to the viewer of both a sense of intrigue, as well as tranquility. Signed and titled in pencil by the artist. Dated 1954. Artist's red chop mark in the bottom left hand corner. Provenance: Estate of Jane Griffin, Bethesda, MD.

Size: 15 7/8" h x 11" w
Condition: Very good.

Biography

print biography

Hodaka Yoshida (吉田 穂高, Japan, 1926-1995) is known for his modern, surreal, mythological, and abstract prints. He is also known as a pioneer and leader of early Japanese modernist printmaking. Hodaka broke the mold of traditional Japanese printmaking by promoting self-expression through sōsaku hanga (creative print movement) and broadening the range of once-confined style and technique.

Hodaka Yoshida was born September 3, 1926 in Tokyo, Japan to the Yoshida family - one of the most recognizable families in Japanese arts culture. Hodaka’s father Hiroshi Yoshida, his mother Fujio Yoshida, and his brother Toshi Yoshida are all renowned oil paint, watercolor, and shin-hanga woodblock print artists. Hodaka’s family encouraged him to study biology and not pursue a career in art. The family printmaking studio (today the Yoshida Hanga Academy) was struggling because of the Second World War in the Pacific, which disrupted its previous successful U.S. and European relationships and exports. Hodaka reluctantly completed his degree in biology at one of Japan’s most prominent schools, but returned to his initial artistic interests and pursuits. By then, the war ended along with Japan’s constrictive, traditional, and nationalistic pre-war art practices. Hodaka, despite his father’s disdain for abstract and non-objective art, was empowered to show his modern works after the emergence of social reform and creative acceptance in Japan and the world. He exhibited his early oil paintings in the Second Nihon Indepéndent exhibition in 1948 and then in the First Yomiuri Indepéndent in 1949. Additionally, Hodaka became a member of the prominent artist association Nihon Hanga Kyōkai (Japan Print Association) in 1952 and exhibited prints at the annual show where his art was well received.

Hodaka began his artistic career in oil painting but later shifted to woodblock printing in 1950 with his own specialized methods. The same year was also the beginning of the coined woodblock printing movement, sōsaku hanga (creative print). This movement was motivated by a desire for self-expression and strayed from the traditional ukiyo-e collaborative system where the artist, carver, printer, and publisher engaged in division of labor. Therefore, the artist took total control of the final image as the initial creator of the design. The artist also assumed the role of director of the prints, not the publishing house. Hodaka, as a result, drew, carved, and printed all of his images. In the early 1950s, Hodaka and his wife and fellow artist, Chizuko, moved to the U.S. to establish themselves as international artists. Hodaka taught woodblock printing at universities around the U.S., including Hawaii. He also traveled to Mexico in 1955 to study indigenous, pre-Columbian artifacts and architecture that inspired some of his work. In 1978, Hodaka became a committee member in the Japan Artist Association and later the Vice President of the International Artist Association. Hodaka was also one of the main researchers and organizers for Japan Print Association’s 25 Years of World Exhibitions of Modern Print Art exhibit, which was held in Tokyo in 1981.

During his early career, Hodaka explored Expressionism, Color Field Abstraction, Photorealism, and Pop Art and was said to have taken inspiration from the work of Bauhaus instructor and artist, Paul Klee (1879-1940) and Spanish abstract artist, Joan Miró (1893-1983). Hodaka mastered various traditional Japanese printmaking techniques whilst broadening the field with new and developed printing practices. Hodaka explored silkscreen, etching, lithography, monoprinting, and photo-transfers, which he used to create multi-layered and eye-catching prints. Hodaka also incorporated facets of the traditional Japanese values such as wabi (imperfection) and sabi (age), Buddhist sculpture and architecture, and Japanese clothing brocade. Hodaka’s work also delves into notions of humanity, Western mythology, nature, and primitive life. Hodaka Yoshida collector and scholar, Euguene Skibbe, broke down Hodaka’s work into nine stages (six major and three transitional), which structured Hodaka’s 45-year career: Early Prints (1950-53), Buddhist Prints (1953-54), Primitive (1955-63), Folk (1963-66), Mythology and Landscape (1966-74), House and Nude (1974-79), FMC House (1979-84), Recollection (1984-91), and Wall prints (1991-95).

Toward the end of his life, Hodaka was awarded the Purple Ribbon Decoration in 1990. On February 11, 1995, Hodaka Yoshida died unexpectedly from a brain aneurism. He is survived by his two children with Chizuko Yoshida, Ayomi Yoshida (1958-), a woodblock and instillation artist, and Takasuke (1959-), a jewelry designer. The Emperor of Japan conferred to him posthumously in 1995 the Order of the Rising Sun, Fourth class – one of the highest national decorations. Hodaka created a little over 600 art prints in his lifetime. He developed a unique artistic career marked by independence and his approach to blend modern art practices and subjects with traditional print techniques. Hodaka’s prints have been included in international biennales in Toyko, Lugano, Lubljana, Frechen and Ibiza. Additionally, Hodaka’s art works are included in major collections like the British Museum, New York Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art in New York, Smithsonian Institution, Art Institute of Chicago, and the National Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo, among others.