- Also known as
Mabuchi Toru (馬淵聖)
primary name: Mabuchi Toru
other name: Mabuchi Tohru
- individual; printmaker; Japanese; Male
- Life dates
- Print artist. Mabuchi was born in Tokyo, the son of Mabuchi Rokutaro, a wood-engraver and later commercial artist who was a pioneer in the airbrush technique. Unusually for those days he encouraged his son to be an artist and taught him early about woodblock techniques. He attended the design course at the Tokyo University of Fine Arts but kept up work in prints and attended Hiratsuka's course there. He graduated in 1941 and spent the Pacific War in the Imperial Guard in Tokyo. After the war he took over his father's business, which gave him the security to develop his intricate print technique. He became a member of the Japanese Print Association in 1954, and was publicised by inclusion in Statler's 'Modern Japanese Prints: An Art Reborn' (1956). By this time he had developed a unique way of printing which is close to Pointillisme. He cuts up very thin wood into small pieces which he then glues to his block in a mosaic-like pattern. A large number of these may go to make one print. His production is therefore rather small. His early themes were landscape but now are mainly still life and the prehistoric 'haniwa' pottery figures of Japan. He often writes his given name as Thoru in Roman.
- Smith, Lawrence, 'Modern Japanese Prints 1912-1989: Woodblocks and Stencils', BMP, London, 1994, p. 29 and no. 119.
Statler, Oliver, 'Modern Japanese Prints: An Art Reborn', Turtle, Rutland, Vermont, and Tokyo, 1956.
Merritt, Helen, and Yamada, Nanako, 'Guide to Modern Japanese Woodblock Prints 1900-1975', University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu, 1992, p. 82.