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Japanese Drawings

Unlike Western drawings, which are usually distinguished as being works on paper, and paintings, which are usually defined as works made on canvas or similar textile, both Japanese drawings and paintings are most commonly produced on paper. As a result, the line between what is considered drawing and what is considered painting becomes a bit hazy. Both western and eastern scholars have debated the question "What is drawing?" particularly in the past decade.

The most agreed upon defining characteristic of drawing is the emphasis on linearity, spontaneity, and gesture. Japanese drawings are usually characterized by quickness and dynamism of movement. While historically viewed as just the first step toward painting, drawing is now is viewed as its own separate genre capable of standing alone as its own complete and valuable art.

Some of the most famously known types of Japanese drawings are called "manga." The word “manga," while now used to describe cartoon drawings that are read in comic-book style, originally represented quick or impromptu pictures. These manga were usually made in ink on paper and often were studies of human gesture and motion. Japanese manga drawing tradition dates back to 1798. Later comic book manga is said to have originated from the exposure during the World Wars to American comic books.


Quick Facts

  • Historically, one of the best known “mangas” is Hokusai manga. In this is included a variety of sketches of sumo wrestlers, plants, animals, everyday life, and imaginings
  • The Mighty Atom, also known as Astro Boy, is a manga that came to be after World War II. Astro Boy is now a very well known cartoon, especially among modern day youth
  • Japanese drawing is rooted in the tradition of sumi-e or ink painting which is a product of Zen Buddhism 2000 years ago

Recommended Items at Auction

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§ Tsuguharu Foujita (French / Japanese 1886-1968) Frogs
Oct 29, 10:00 AM BST
§ Tsuguharu Foujita (French / Japanese 1886-1968) Frogs
by Lyon & Turnbull
Est: £800- £1,200
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Two Signed Art Paintings on Silk from Japan [137745]
Oct 30, 8:00 AM PDT
Two Signed Art Paintings on Silk from Japan [137745]
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Minagawa Kien (1735-1807), Jap
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Minagawa Kien (1735-1807), Jap
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Kano Tsunenobu (1636-1713): Pl
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Kano Tanshin Morimasa (1653-17
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Yosa Buson (1716-1784): The Fo
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Yosa Buson (1716-1784): The Fo
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Sesson Shukei (1504-1589), Jap
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Sesson Shukei (1504-1589), Jap
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Mori Ippo (1798-1871): Pair of
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Mori Ippo (1798-1871): Pair of
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PAINTER OF THE TOSA SCHOOL
Nov 11, 9:30 AM CET
PAINTER OF THE TOSA SCHOOL
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ANONYMOUS PAINTER FROM THE TOSA SCHOOL
Nov 11, 9:30 AM CET
ANONYMOUS PAINTER FROM THE TOSA SCHOOL
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PAINTER OF THE TOSA AND KANO SCHOOL
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PAINTER OF THE TOSA AND KANO SCHOOL
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KANO FURUNOBU
Nov 11, 9:30 AM CET
KANO FURUNOBU
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Est: €500- €700
€5000 Bids
KAMATA GANSEN
Nov 11, 9:30 AM CET
KAMATA GANSEN
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Est: €400- €600
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KANO TANSHIN (1785 - 1835)
Nov 11, 9:30 AM CET
KANO TANSHIN (1785 - 1835)
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AN ALBUM PAGE WITH A SCENE FROM THE TALE OF GENJI
Nov 11, 9:30 AM CET
AN ALBUM PAGE WITH A SCENE FROM THE TALE OF GENJI
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HOTEI BELOW A PINE IN THE STYLE OF MIYAMOTO MUSHASHI
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HOTEI BELOW A PINE IN THE STYLE OF MIYAMOTO MUSHASHI
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VARIOUS ANONYMOUS ARTISTS, INCL. THE TOSA SCHOOL
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VARIOUS ANONYMOUS ARTISTS, INCL. THE TOSA SCHOOL
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IN THE STYLE OF NAGASAWA RÔSETSU (1754-1799)
Nov 11, 9:30 AM CET
IN THE STYLE OF NAGASAWA RÔSETSU (1754-1799)
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HAYAKAWA GEN
Nov 11, 9:30 AM CET
HAYAKAWA GEN
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Est: €500- €800
€5000 Bids
NINE INK DRAWINGS ON THIN PAPER
Nov 11, 9:30 AM CET
NINE INK DRAWINGS ON THIN PAPER
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Est: €80- €120
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SEVEN DRAWINGS AND PRINTS
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SEVEN DRAWINGS AND PRINTS
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Est: €150- €250
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Sellers Who Sell Japanese Drawings


Nagel Auction

Nagel Auction

Historia Auktionshaus

Historia Auktionshaus

Signens Kunstauktionen

Signens Kunstauktionen

Bonhams

Bonhams