George Suyeoka’s use of Graphite as a Background ‘Color” in a Moku Hanga

George is an artist and friend who lives in Evanston, IL. His professional work has included illustrations for books, particularly books that tell traditional Japanese folk tales, and other 2 dimensional work on paper, including woodblock prints. His undergraduate thesis at the Art Institute of Chicago included woodblock prints.

 

George Suyeoka next to his woodblock print of Gen Curtis E. LeMay, USAF

George was commissioned during the cold war to make a Moku Hanga of General Curtis E. (“Bomber”) LeMay, Chief of the Strategic Air Command. George employed a graphite background to give a steely feel to the print and I found this very engaging. It was applied in a manner similar to the application of mica: nori deposited from the block and then graphite powder spread on top of the nori. This photo had to be taken at an angle to avoid a reflection from a window in George’s home.

 

George Suyeoka's Woodblock Print of Curtis E. LeMay

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