Popular Protest in Post War Japan: The Antiwar Art of Shikoku Gorō

Expressing Hiroshima

Shikoku described his daily habits as including art: “I always carry a sketchbook with me so I can draw places that catch my eye. The images in this book are mostly a product of that habit of mine. A few are studies for oil paintings.” The works in Hiroshima Sketches date from 1962 to 1985.  In his 1975 A Hundred Bridges of Hiroshima (Hiroshima hyakkyō), a larger format hardcover book, Shikoku included multiple sketches of individual bridges from different angles. While Shikoku intended his Hiroshima drawings as a means of exploration of the city rather than as static objects for “artistic appreciation,” he proposes that if he trains and composes them to “appeal to the senses” the images might have some artistic merit (Hiroshima Sketches, pp. 158-159). 

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