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Aiming to continue Mokuhanga AIR MI-LAB!

Aiming to continue Mokuhanga AIR MI-LAB!

The payment is processed regardless of its achievement of the funding goal.

What's this Challenge about?

For continuous popularization of environmentally-friendly and human-friendly techniques of Mokuhanga

More than 250 artists and university associates have deepened their interest in Japanese culture and society through learning about water-based woodblock printmaking.
Mokuhanga Conference 2011

Initially, many of those with an interest in water-based woodblock printmaking acquire that interest through an appreciate of how environmentally-friendly and non-toxic the techniques of woodblock printing are; and in the process of learning about it they ask us questions, such as when did woodblock printmaking first develop, who initially conceived of it, and how did they determine what materials, tools, and techniques to use.

Instruction of Basic Training Program

Wrokshop of sharpening chisels

Mokuhanga practice

Development to artist's books in Japanese art form

In order to answer such questions, we researched the 1,200-year history of Japanese book-printing (i.e. Japanese bibliography) from antiquity to the end of the Edo period.
Orihonn (accordion book)

Because the techniques of Mokuhanga had been developed along with the production of Japanese books which began at the project One Million Pagodas and Dharani Prayers in Nara Era (8C). International Mokuhanga Innovation Laboratory (MI-LAB) has developed a program for the study of Japanese art forms through examination of such traditional bookmaking methods as kansu-bon (scrolls), ori-hon (accordion books), toji-hon (bound books), byobu (folding screens), and so forth.
Uraychi Workshop

Urauchi glue making

In the future, it is the intention that the program will include the production of an artist’s book, which translates the aesthetics of traditional Japanese bookbinding in terms accessible to modern artists. In 2019, MI-LAB conducted it as part of the Mokuhanga Upper Advance Program, an advanced program to learn about woodblock printmaking. From 2021, the Artist Book Program Using Japanese Art Form will be run independently.

To explain the characteristic of Japanese bookmaking shortly, it is the use of recyclable and highly sustainable materials and tools. It has something in common with modern sustainable development goals (SDGs): using glue that easily peels off for repair 100 years later, using thread binding for easy disassembly and using washi paper and water-based pigment for ecological disposal.

The format of Japanese books, in which letters and pictures are created in the
same space, is a feature of Japanese literature publishing.
When many artists in the world deepened their interest in Japanese culture through learning about Mokuhanga, and when they learned to make Japanese-style artist’s books in their own contemporary way, the demand for tools and materials of those traditional techniques will increase and contribute to the vitalization of the Japanese art materials industry.

International exhibition and workshop project "Mokuhanga between Tokyo and Moscow"

*About MI-LAB

Founded in 2011, MI-LAB (Mokuhanga Innovation Lab) is an artist-in-residence program designed to provide extensive knowledge of mokuhanga (water-based woodblock printmaking) and its techniques to international artists, printmakers and teachers of printmaking, as well as to enable them to make use of traditional tools and materials.

The scope of the MI-LAB program ranges from introductory to advanced studies and also includes ongoing self-development programs for mid-career mokohanga artists and academic researchers. The current program at Fujikawaguchiko-cho is based upon the curriculum of the Nagasawa Art Park (NAP) Artists-in-Residence program, held in Awaji-city between 1997 and 2011, in which 78 artists from 30 countries participated.

The MI-LAB residential studio is located at the foot of Mount Fuji, an area that was registered as a World Cultural Heritage site by UNESCO in 2013. The premises are close to Lake Kawaguchi, in peaceful rural surroundings. The workshop is led by professional mokuhanga artists, master carvers and printers. This enables participating artists from differing cultural backgrounds to explore their interests through the traditional techniques of mokuhanga.

MI-LAB Reports Books

MI-LAB also showcases the artists’ work and activities in Tokyo. The CfSHE (Centre for the Science of Human Endeavor) Gallery organizes exhibitions, workshops, discussions and forums that are related to MI-LAB programs and to mokuhanga in general. Through its annual program of workshops and presentations, MI-LAB encourages participating artists to broaden their professional skills and to engage in networking, with the aim of encouraging the mutual development of printmakers throughout the world.

MI-LAB -Preparations- 6 instructor staff woodblock print exhibition

MI-LAB -Preparations-
Instructor staff / mokuhanga 6 person exhibition
August 21 to October 18, 2020
12:00~18:00 (Friday, Saturday and Sunday)

Artist talk

(17:00~ Instagram Live @cfshe_gallery)

Michiko Hamada (8/22, 10/3) Chihiro Taki (8/29, 10/10) Aya Shiokawa (9/11, 10/17) Tomoya Furukawa (9/18, 9/26) konno yuuta (9 /4,10/9) Keiko Kobayashi (9/19,10/4)

Use of funds

MI-LAB Artist-in-Residence (AIR) Programs has been run since 1997 for popularization of water-based woodblock printmaking (Mokuhanga) overseas. We have accepted more than 250 artists and university associates from abroad. In 2020, however, we are obliged to postpone all the AIR programs to 2021 due to COVID-2019. To overcome this difficulty, we will produce and distribute video of tutoring techniques and exhibition, which will be our post-corona activity. We are going to use the fund for this purpose .