TOKYO STATION GALLERY

Current Exhibition

Takehisa Yumeji: Master of Japanese Modern Illustration

Saturday, May 19 - Sunday, July 1, 2018

Mai (May), cover illustration from The ladies' graphicVol. 3, Issue 5; 1926; Chiyoda City Education Board

Mai (May), cover illustration from The ladies' graphic Vol. 3, Issue 5; 1926; Chiyoda City Education Board

Hakumokuren to Otome (Magnolia and a Girl) ; c. 1919; Chiyoda City Education Board

Hakumokuren to Otome (Magnolia and a Girl) ; c. 1919; Chiyoda City Education Board

Minatoya Ezōshi Ten; 1914; Chiyoda City Education Board

Minatoya Ezōshi Ten; 1914; Chiyoda City Education Board

Otsubaki (Large Camellia); 1914-15; Chiyoda City Education Board

Otsubaki (Large Camellia); 1914-15; Chiyoda City Education Board

Original artwork “Lolita” from Senow music scores; 1923; Chiyoda City Education Board

Original artwork “Lolita” from Senow music scores; 1923; Chiyoda City Education Board

Original artwork “Hibari (Sky lark)” from Senow music scores; 1924; Chiyoda City Education Board

Original artwork “Hibari (Sky lark)” from Senow music scores; 1924; Chiyoda City Education Board

[Closed]
Mondays, except for June 25
[Open Hours]
10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
*Fridays: Until 8:00 p.m.
*Last admission 30 minutes before closing
[Admission Fee]
Adults (at the door): 900 yen,
high school and university students (at the door): 700 yen
Adults (advance ticket): 700 yen,
high school and university students (advance ticket): 500 yen
*Junior high school students and younger: Free
*For groups of 20 or more, admission fees are 800 yen for adults and 600 yen for high school and university students
*Persons with a disability certificate or similar receive a 100 yen discount on tickets purchased at the door, and one accompanying helper is admitted free.

[Ticket Sales]
Tokyo Station Gallery (Up until 30 minutes before the gallery closes)
Lawson Ticket (L-Code 35577), E Plus, CN Playguide and Seven Ticket
*Advance tickets are on sale until May 18.
*Advance tickets are on sale at the Tokyo Station Gallery reception desk until May 6, on days when the gallery is open.

See you at Tokyo Station!

The exhibition consists of four sections. Section 1 is about Takehisa Yumeji (1884-1934) in his youth. Section 2 focuses on his work, such as publishing, printing and woodblocks. Section 3 explores in more detail his work connected with music and score sheets, and Section 4 covers such topics as the original artwork for his autobiographical novel Shuppan (Sailing Off), and publications by Ryuseikaku after Yumeji's death.

[Contents]

Section 1 The Early Days

As a young student, Yumeji eked out a living by submitting drawings and poems to newspapers and magazines. He reached a turning point when an illustration entitled Tsutsuizutsu won first prize in a contest held by Seinen Kessaku Shu, a special summer edition of Chugakusekai magazine in June 1905. Yumeji gashu: Haru-no-maki (The Yumeji collection of work: Spring) was published in 1909.
Yohran (Cradle) an anthology of hand-drawn illustrations and original writings that he made while enrolled at Waseda Jitsugyo School is on public display for the first time here. This section not only gives us a glimpse of the young Yumeji but also traces his roots and, via his early works, shows how he started out as an artist.

Must-see (1) First time exhibited! An experimental work from Yumeji's adolescent years

Yohran (Cradle) was created in 1903. It is a handwritten book that includes adaptations of foreign literature, original writings, and a few illustrations. The work shows signs of revisions, and its vivid intensity conveys the abundant talents of the 20 year-old Yumeji as well as his strong desire to send his works out into the world.

Cover for the Yohran (Cradle) ; 1903; Chiyoda City Education Board

Cover for the Yohran (Cradle) ; 1903;
Chiyoda City Education Board

Section 2 The Cute and the Beautiful

Yumeji opened a shop called Minatoya Ezoshiten in the Nihonbashi Gofukucho district in October 1914. The store was run by Tamaki Kishi, the only woman that Yumeji officially married, and was a 'brand shop' that sold items designed by Yumeji, such as decorative paper, writing paper, envelopes, and decorative collars to go under kimonos. It was also a gathering place for young artists such as Koshiro Onchi and Kyokichi Tanaka and a gallery where they could display their works.
This was not only the period in which Yumeji established his typical style of depicting beautiful women, it was also the time when he expanded and diversified his activities to include such areas as picture postcards, magazine covers and illustrations, and bookbinding. This section reveals how enthusiastic Yumeji was about holding his own exhibitions, and also the wide range of his works as he continued to provide fine art that was widely accessible, not only to art lovers but also to the reading public, women and children.

Must-see (2) An exhaustive overview of Yumeji's activities with more than 500 exhibits on display

Yumeji's creative activities were intimately linked with publishing. This exhibition is one of the biggest ever, with more than 500 items on display. It looks at Yumeji's diverse activities from a variety of perspectives. It offers an exhaustive overview of Takehisa Yumeji's activities; not just the many anthologies he published, but also bookbindings, song sheet covers, picture books for children, picture postcards, designs for decorative paper and inner kimono collars, and even hand-drawn pictures.

Section 3 Visual Music

Yumeji drew the covers for many song sheets. The most well-known are the scores published by Senow music scores. Their cover designs incorporate elements from various genres to express an image of musical works from Japan and overseas. Yumeji was in charge of the cover art for more than 270 musical scores, including Yoimachigusa (Evening Primrose) for which he wrote the lyrics. He was also actively involved in scores for children's songs as well. This section introduces the rich and varied world of Taisho Era music that Yumeji depicted.

Section 4 Shuppan (Sailing Off)

Serialized in the Miyako Shimbun newspaper in 1927, Shuppan (Sailing Off) is an autobiographical novel covering half of Yumeji's life. The ink-drawn illustrations capture the women he loved and places that he visited with them, as well as more abstract psychological depictions.
Yumeji went abroad after the serialization of Shuppan (Sailing Off), but he personally assembled the newspaper clippings to ask his friends to make into the book. This section focuses on the people who were associated with Yumeji, and on Ryuseikaku's assiduous publication of his writings and artwork, in a fresh consideration of the publishing that supported Yumeji, brought him to prominence and linked him with his audience.

Must-see (3) First time exhibited! The original drawings of the illustrations for his autobiographical novel Shuppan (Sailing Off)

Shuppan (Sailing Off) had 134 illustrations and caused a huge stir when it was released. This exhibition is the first time that all those illustrations have been on display in the same place. It is extremely rare for the original artwork of a novel from that era to still exist in its entirety. We hope that you will thoroughly enjoy these masterpieces from the period when Yumeji's art had reached its full maturity.

Original artwork for Shuppan (Sailing Off); 1927; Chiyoda City Education Board

Original artwork for Shuppan (Sailing Off); 1927;
Chiyoda City Education Board