The Suminagashi works of Japanese artist Ryosaku Kotaka astonishingly combine traditional Japanese marbling technique with fresh modern vision.
Suminagashi, a technique which originated in China over 2000 years ago, was first practiced in Japan by Shinto priests as early as the 12th century. It finds it's place in the same category as Asian ink-wash and calligraphy painting. The technique process is as follows: After having been carefully dropped on still water, the ink is blown across the surface. During this process the artist leads the ink pigment through the water to create composition and pattern. When satisfied, paper is lowered onto the water’s surface to absorb the ink. One is essentially seeing an image captured of water when looking at his paintings, yet in some instances, extraordinary forms and compositions are produced quite unlike anything resembling water's movement.
Furthermore, to this beautiful technique, the artist believes capturing nature on washi to communicate a part of himself:
‘Paper, through every age, has been a vehicle for communication. Through art washi has the power to convey the Universe. Washi shows the Universe of myself.’
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