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Biography Minami, Kunz˘ (1883 - 1950)

Minami Kunz˘ was born in Yasűra, Hiroshima Prefecture in 1883. In 1907 he graduated from Tokyo School of Fine Arts, then went to Europe. In United Kingdom he studied British art, especially the Pre-Raphaelites; there he became friends with Tomimoto Kenkichi (1886-1963). In Paris he spent most of his time. In 1910 he went back to Japan (by way of USA, travelling on the Lusitania).
He contributed illustrations and articles to Shirakaba - White Birch, the journal of the Shirakaba group, which was started in 1910 and which illustrated works by CÚzanne, Manet, Gauguin, van Gogh, Renoir and Matisse. In 1911 an exhibition of his woodblock prints was held, probably the first ever solo exhibition of S˘saku Hanga prints!
In 1912 he was one of the founding members of the K˘fűkai, an association of Western-style painters, together with Nagazawa Hiromitsu and Tanabe Itaru (1886-1968)(a.o.). He exhibited paintings at the Bunten, and became a Bunten judge after 1916. In the late 1930s he became a teacher at the Tokyo School of Fine Arts, sharing a room with Hiratsuka Un'ichi. He was known as a woodblock print artist, a watercolourist, and as a "mildly impressionistic painter with a touch of pointillism in his work" (Roberts).

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