Woodblock Prints (Mokuhanga)

Mokuhanga translates to ‘woodblock print.’ 

This traditional Japanese printing method emerged in the 17th century to mass produce books and art. There is a recent resurgence of this technique among contemporary printmakers across the globe. Using watercolors and rice paper, images are transferred by hand from carved blocks of wood.



Mt Fuji; n. the highest volcano in Japan. This perfectly cone shaped active volcano last erupted in 1707-1708. It is one of Japan’s ‘Three Holy Mountains’ and the site of many sacred pilgrimages. 

I was invited to Japan by MI-LAB to study Mokuhanga, the ancient art of woodblock printing. Mt Fuji hovered off my balcony and for five weeks I studied her moods as I practiced the technique of bokashi—the Japanese term for shading from light to dark and dark to light. 

Through morning, midday, and evening, the mountain never stands still. Yet, she is motionless. Lured by her ever-changing patterns of light and weather, and the sacred energy of the mountain, I am entranced. I now understand why artists, poets and writers have been painting, drawing and writing about Mt Fuji for centuries. She casts a spell.

O snail
Climb Mt Fuji
But slowly, slowly



This is a commentary on our ever-increasing perilous relationship with climate change. A paper parasol cannot protect us from acid rain. We are positioned to notice and can no longer count the days before we begin to change our ways.