Japanese printmaker Yoshida Hodaka’s exhibition at the Asian Art Museum gathers nearly 50 of the late influential artist’s works, including 12 poster-size prints for each one of the Zodiac signs that recall trippy album covers.
The Surrealist prints contain images hidden with images—like the people who appear as mountains in the Gemini print, which is curator Yuki Morishima’s favorite.
“Every time I look at these prints, I see something new and different, something exciting,” said Morishima. “He takes ordinary objects completely out of context, creating a dream-like atmosphere.”
You can find your own sign—and purchase the prints individually or as a set of notecards—at the museum store.
“Color Trip: Yoshida Hodaka’s Modern Prints” opens on Dec. 16 and runs through May 23, 2023. It includes the entire span of Hodaka’s 40-year career from the 1950s to the 1990s, demonstrating his evolution as an artist as Japanese visual culture began to take the world by storm.
Born on Sept. 3, 1926, the artist was a Tiger (or tora) in the Japanese system of astrology. He was also a Virgo—and it’s unclear why the artist chose Western astrology for the series, according to Morishima.
The Tokyo-based Hodaka came from the well-known Yoshida family of artists, with his father Hiroshi the most famous, according to Morishima. Yet while his brother and father created realistic landscape prints, Hodaka pursued abstract printmaking, an iconoclast within his own family.
“He paved the way for the next generation of Japanese printmakers,” said Morishima.
Morishima also points to the women artists in the Yoshida family who broke gender norms, not unlike Bernice Bing, the Chinese American artist whose work is also on view at the museum. Ayomi Yoshida, Hodaka’s daughter, began as a printmaker and now makes art installations, one of which is permanently installed in Target’s corporate headquarters in Minneapolis.
Ayomi will speak at a special preview of the exhibition happening Dec. 15, sharing a more intimate side of her father.
Color Trip: Yoshida Hodaka’s Modern Prints
📍Asian Art Museum
🗓Dec. 16, 2022-May 23, 2023
Julie Zigoris can be reached at [email protected]