Print a red snapper

(Shanghai Daily)
Updated: 2007-08-03 10:55

A Japanese master print maker will give a public demonstration Sunday of the art of gyotaku, the art of "fish printing" with fresh fish and scallops at the Shanghai Ocean Aquarium.

Gyotaku, the Japanese art of "fish printing" with fresh fish and sea creatures, beckons fish as well as art lovers to the Shanghai Ocean Aquarium on Sunday.

They can make their own artistic fish prints under the instruction of Mineo Ryuka Yamamoto, Japanese fisherman and master print maker.

This is the third time Yamamoto, president of the International Fish Print Studio, has held public a workshop and demonstration in Shanghai.

He has awed people with his skills in making cod fish, haddock, salmon, seashells and other marine life into stunning works of art.

His demonstration of gyotaku art will start tomorrow with two closed fish print workshops inside the aquarium.

Yamamoto says he will first demonstrate the printing of an emperor red snapper, and afterwards he will instruct the classes in printing scallops on a T-shirt.

Sunday will also be a public arts carnival for "fish printing" as 200 people will join Yamamoto in printing scallops on a long polyester cloth in the outdoor plaza of the aquarium.

Gyotaku art, dating to the 18th century, was first developed to preserve a true record of the size and characteristics of fish caught by Japanese anglers.

It seems simple, but patience, caution, creativity and numerous steps are necessary.

In fish printing, paper or silk are placed over a fish (or a shell or leaf), then inked tampos (cotton balls dipped in ink) are pressed carefully against the fabric, rendering a perfect image of the subject.

A master of this genre, Yamamoto really enjoys the light-hearted process of gyotaku. First he catches the fish, then he makes an accurate and artistic image - then he eats his catch.

In past decades, the artist has studied and worked with printmakers all around the world. His students also come from around the world.

Yamamoto has also applied the art of Gyotaku to record and print a horse and a tiger (life-size models). After that, a lotus is easy.

Public workshop and demonstration
Date: August 5, 5-7pm
Venue: Outside plaza of Shanghai Ocean Aquarium, 1388 Lujiazuihuan Rd, Pudong
Admission: Free for those with receipts for a ticket within the past one week
Tel: 021-5877-9988


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