Epson Brings Works of Famous Ukiyo-e Artist Hokusai to Life

Hokusai-kan curator Kenichiro Hashimoto stands at the entrance to the exhibition next to a wave print output using an Epson large-format printer. The black circle on the left features Hokusai's "Sparrow Dance" illustrations projected like a cartoon using an Epson projector.

Epson is supporting a special exhibition of works by famous ukiyo-e (woodblock) artist Katsushika Hokusai. The exhibition, which is being held at the Hokusai-kan museum in Obuse, Japan, was held to commemorate the renovation of the museum, which celebrates its 40th anniversary next year.

Although Hokusai, who lived from 1760 to 1849, is best known worldwide for his ukiyo-e artwork including his renowned "Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji" series, he was also a prolific painter and printmaker. A ceremony to mark the exhibition, entitled "Hokusai and his disciples," attracted nearly 80 reporters.

Visitors to the exhibition have the opportunity to view all 46 original works of Hokusai's Mount Fuji series. Epson contributed in various ways such as by printing out expanded prints of the original works using an Epson Stylus Pro 11880 large-format printer, or, when the original works were too large to be transported to the museum, in a reduced size.

A Studio Ghibli staff member
poses in front of an expanded
reproduction of one
of Hokusai's famous waterfall

Curator Hashimoto poses in front of a
reduced-size reproduction of
Hokusai's enormous "Dharma" work.

An introductory panel printed by Epson.

A description of Hokusai's life printed out by
Epson. Mika Iimori, who was involved in
setting up the exhibition, commented,
"There's often a tendency for a certain
redness to appear when printing in grey.
However, I was delighted that the Epson
printer managed to solve this issue and
faithfully reproduce the subtle

The entrance to the museum featured successive frames of Hokusai's "Sparrow Dance" projected like a cartoon using an Epson EB-535W projector. Museum curator Kenichiro Hashimoto commented, "The Epson products have brought a real depth to the exhibition thanks to the movement they provide and the unique ability of the reproductions to draw people's interest." The Epson EB-1776W projector is also being used in the exhibition.

An Epson EB-535W in action at the entrance

An Epson EB-1776W projector in use

Shin Hashida of Studio Ghibli, which was also involved, said, "I truly believe this magnificent Hokusai exhibition appeals to people of all ages. The use of projectors and printers to provide movement and to create expanded artworks gives the exhibition a real modern feel and helps bring Hokusai to life. Epson's products bring an essential quality and color to the event."

The exhibition is scheduled to run until June 30.

Note that Epson products and services vary by region. Please refer to your local Epson sales company for details of projectors and other products and services available in your region: