UMEHARA Ryuzaburo

Native placeKyoto, JPN
Dead placeTokyo, JPN


Born the son of a kimono dyecraftsman in Kyoto. Originally known as Ryozaburo. Familiar with traditional designs and colors from a young age. In 1903 was trained by Asai Chu at the Shogoin Western-style Painting School (the Kansai Bijutsu-in after 1906). In 1908 went to France where he was deeply affected by Renoir's works. Began studying under Renoir 1909. Traveled to Italy where he encountered a great deal of ancient art and western European art. In 1913 returned to Japan where he held a one-man show sponsored by the Shirakaba group. The following year he participated in the establishment of the Nika-kai, and in 1918 left the group. Returned to France in 1920 on the occasion of Renoir's death, and also visited Naples on that trip. He also experienced a period of stagnation in his work due to problems with the climate and his expression. In 1922 he participated as a member in the founding of the Shunyo-kai, and left the group in 1925 when he was invited to join the Kokuga-sosaku-kyokai. Became the central figure in that group. Established his own personal style characterized by a rich sense of color and powerful brush strokes, and received the Oder of Cultural Merit in 1952.

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