Paul Binnie, Ogon (Golden)

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Artist: Paul Binnie (1967-)
Title: Ogon (Golden)
Edition: 43/50
Published: by the artist
Date: 1994
Size: 31.7 x 23.8 cm

Kappazuri stencil print on paper.

This print shows a bronze backlit silhouette of a tattooed male with a sakura (cherry) blossom half sleeve. The paper is a black washi, and the background is covered in gold mica powder, giving the print a golden sheen.

Cherry blossoms stand for the fleetingness of life in Japanese culture. In both traditional and contemporary woodcut prints, such elements like flowers and animals were and are often used to infuse the image with additional layers of meaning.

This edition particularly is one of Paul Binnie's earlier tattoo print series, in which the subject is depicted in a slightly different style than in the ones to come after. The manner of shaping the figure without the use of lines is reminiscent of Toshi Yoshida's experimental work, a woodblock print master admired by Paul Binnie.

Paul Binnie


Blending traditional methods with a modern style, Paul Binnie’s work is heavily influenced by the Shin-hanga movement, founded by the publisher Shozaburo Watanabe (1885-1962). Shozaburo aimed to renew declining Ukiyo-e tradition and break into foreign markets by commissioning new, young artists who would work within the old co-operated system, composed of the publisher, artist, engraver and printers. However, Binnie works independently, making prints from beginning to the end, as was done by artists of the post-war Sosaku hanga movement. He works across several different subjects including kabuki, tattoo, landscape and beauty prints. Binnie’s original plan of a short stay in Japan changed once he started to sell his kabuki prints. He decided to expand his technique and remained in Japan creating works of this subject until 1998. His interest in Japanese tattoo was born when he saw Yakuza, members of the Japanese mafia who traditionally have body tattoos, bathing for the first time in a sento (Japanese-style public bath). Near the end of 1997, he began to expand into Japanese landscape prints, which became a huge success.

More Information
Print FormatOther
ArtistPaul Binnie
SubjectSamurai & Male, Tattoo Design, Contemporary
Dimensions31.7 x 23.8 cm
Condition ReportExcellent.