Gyoshu Hayami and Japan art: Meiji to early Showa

Gyoshu Hayami and Japan art: Meiji to early Showa

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

The highly esteemed Gyoshū Hayami (1894-1935) created many adorable art pieces throughout his relatively short life. He was born during the Meiji Period and died during the early Showa Period. Therefore, Gyoshū accepted artistic developments emanating from Europe while adoring the traditions of Japan concerning Yamato-e, Rinpa (Rimpa), Bunjinga, and other artistic traditions.

Gyoshū also marveled at the art world of the Middle Kingdom (China). Hence, the art of the Song Dynasty and Yuan Dynasty – which ties in with his studies of Bunjinga – equally impacted him during his informative years.

The Adachi Museum of Art says, “Hayami Gyoshu was born in Tokyo. He entered a private art school, Angado Gajuku, sponsored by Matsumoto Fuko, where he improved his skills by replicating classical Japanese/Oriental paintings. He later participated in Koji-kai, after being accepted by Imamura Shiko, and he regarded Shiko as his mentor throughout his life.”

Gyoshū fused his wealth of artistic knowledge – along with the ideas of his mentor – throughout his short life. Thus a wealth of creativity and innovation is witnessed when viewing his art. 

The Setagaya Art Museum says, “The life of Japanese-style painting master Gyoshu Hayami(1894-1935) flashed by in a brief 40 years filled with storm and stress. After starting out with historical painting, Gyoshu went through a bewildering series of artistic changes…”

His life was full of creativity, ideas, hope, and innovation. Thus Gyoshū constantly challenged his artistic soul.


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