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Ace Moen

Artist: Ono Tadashige (1909–1990)

Seaside Village, 1965

“With crisscrossing slices of his chisel, Ono Tadashige depicted rice fields fringed by dwellings and a watch tower under a brooding sky. Ono began the process by darkening textured paper with ink. He then impressed the woodblocks, first with gouache (an opaque, watercolor-based paint) to prevent the printing ink from disappearing into the paper, and then with colors. The rich hues reverberate against the dark background.”*

Somehow, this print seemed to be the most depressing. Something about the crisscrossing slices in the red sky above the dark village gives it a really ominous feeling. The mood of this piece and the way it was conveyed was the main reason that this quickly became my favorite of all of the prints in the exhibition. I absolutely love how not only the colors, but also the way it was carved, helps to set the mood of the piece.

Looking at this print, I felt quite sad. The sky above the village is dark, leaving the village below in a shadowy darkness. It’s void of any people, making it look empty––almost like a ghost town.

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