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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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Dec 09, 10:00 AM CET
Japanische Tuschmalerei.
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Dec 03, 10:00 AM CET
4 keine Japanische (Tusche-) Zeichnungen
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KATO BUNREI (1706-1782), japanisches Kakemono
Dec 03, 10:00 AM CET
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Dec 03, 10:00 AM CET
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Japanese Calligraphy On Silk With Red Seal
Dec 03, 11:00 AM EST
Japanese Calligraphy On Silk With Red Seal
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金卷芳俊 Yoshitoshi Kanemaki (Japanese, 1972)
Dec 04, 2:00 PM CST
金卷芳俊 Yoshitoshi Kanemaki (Japanese, 1972)
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草間彌生 Yayoi KUSAMA (Japanese, b. 1929)
Dec 04, 2:00 PM CST
草間彌生 Yayoi KUSAMA (Japanese, b. 1929)
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Sellers Who Sell Japanese Drawings


Auktionshaus Rotherbaum OHG

Auktionshaus Rotherbaum OHG

Ravenel

Ravenel

Nagel Auction

Nagel Auction

Caza Sikes

Caza Sikes