Kiyoshi SAITO (1907-1997)
Kiyoshi SAITO (1907-1997) decided to become an artist in 1932, when he moved to Tokyo and studied at the Hongō Art School. When he met Ono Tadashige (a woodblock print maker and one of the founding members of the Shin Hanga Movement).
When his work Steady Gaze (Flower) won the Japanese Ancestry Prize at the São Paulo Biennale in 1951, it was the first international prize won for a Japanese artist after WWII. After that event, Saito was well known around the world.
The biggest collections on his works (donated by the artist) can be found at the Art Institute of Chicago, The Museum of Fine Arts at Boston, the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor and the Museum of Fukushima City.
Mainly his works depict the rural landscape and temple of his childhood home town Aizu-bange in Fukushima Province. But he also shows single figurative compositions, some masterfully incorporated into the wood grain patterns. The lack of depth is a significant characteristic of Kiyoshi Saito’s works, also evolving to geometrical abstraction.