The Product: Japanese designs silkscreen print Gion Festival II
These unusual and colourful Japanese designs art silkscreen prints are a modern interpretation of one of Japan’s most famous, ago old religious festivals or ‘Matsuri’ that takes place in Kyoto each July.
Honouring the theme of purity and well being, the Gion Matsuri takes the form of a procession of some thirty elaborately decorated floats through the streets of Kyoto. The two-storey floats, adorned with silks, textiles, sculptures, paintings and tapestries, roll slowly forwards on huge wooden wheels, pulled along by pageant participants in ancient costumes. Under the floats’ ornate, lacquered roofs, musicians play flutes and drums while good luck favours are tossed to crowds of onlookers.
The Gion I and Gion II silkscreen prints depict and overlay this annual, historic event with striking, modern aesthetics. Simple black silhouettes of floats and participants parade in lines against graphic flashes of bright, rainbow colour. A perfect example of destination-inspired design given a modern flourish. For a prettier, more feminine take on Japanese wall art, take a look at the fine art prints of hand-drawn florals artist Keiko Yanagisawa here.
Japanese designs, especially in this striking silhouette form and rainbow palette, are a brilliant addition to any gallery wall. Equally, they will hold their own as statement pieces on plain or patterned walls. Never be afraid to layer up patterns – and that includes detailed, decorative artworks against patterned wallpaper. The key is to sufficiently contrast the scale of the two patterns. It’s also worth noting that dark walls allow these artworks to really leap out and be the star of the show. On one wall, we hung this framed silkscreen against the gloriously deep and intensely-hued ‘Pelt’ from Farrow & Ball (see images).
Both versions (Gion I here and the print on this page, Gion II) are supplied with simple black box frames, stamped on the reverse by the maker, Shogun Designs, measuring 52cm x 52cm x 4.5cm projection.