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Shinoda Toko


Lithography with Hand Applied Brush Strokes and Calligraphy

Born in 1913, Shinoda Toko is a world famous painter, calligrapher, print maker, whose 100th birthday in 2013 is stlll being celebrated in exhibits throughout the globe.

Shinoda-san’s elegant and powerful lithographs are accented with calligraphy that she adds after printing her small editions, making each piece within the edition unique. Sometimes she employs ancient ink from her rare collection of Ming Dynasty ink stones, other times Western ink in gold and silver or, more infrequently, blue, green or copper. This unparalleled artist exacts an extraordinary range of color from black sumi (ink) as well.

In Shinoda-san’s hands, the ancient art form of calligraphy and newer technique of lithography are transformed into exciting new territory both spatially and pictorially. The result is art that has a Japanese essence, yet an intriguing universal voice.

Describing her work, Shinoda-san has said, “Certain forms float up in my mind’s eye. Aromas, a blowing breeze, a rain-drenched gust of wind. The air is in motion, my heart is in motion. I try to capture these vague, evanescent images of that instant.”

David Rockefeller, an avid collector of Shinoda-san’s work has said, “One always sees new and different things in her wonderful abstractions.”

Time Magazine has written, “Her trail blazing accomplishments are analogous to Picasso’s.”

Shinoda-san first exhibited her work at New York’s Museum of Modern Art in 1954, although her first exhibit was in Tokyo in 1940. She stopped making lithographs in 2007, making the few that are left on the market all the more precious.


Museums and Institutions

  • Albright-Knox Art Gallery, New York
  • British Museum, London
  • Brooklyn, Museum, New York
  • Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinnati, US
  • Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts, US
  • Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany
  • Museum of Fine Arts, Gifu, Japan
  • Museum of Modern Art, Toyama, Japan
  • National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, Japan
  • Rijksmuseum Kroller-Muller, Otterlo, The Netherlands
  • Singapore National Museum, Singapore
  • Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, US
  • Stadtisches Museum den Haag, The Netherlands
  • Tikotin Museum of Japanese Art, Haifa, Israel
  • The Art Institute of Chicago, US
  • The Ford Foundation Collection, New York, US
  • The Rockefeller Foundation Collection, New York, US
  • The Museum of Modern Art, New York, US
  • The Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art, New York, US

Murals and Commissions

  • Asahi Mutual Life Insurance Co., Tokyo, Japan
  • Bankers Trust Corp., Tokyo Japan
  • Capitol Tokyu Hotel, Tokyo, Japan
  • Chemical Bank, Tokyo, Japan
  • Concert House, Malmo, Sweden
  • Credit Lyonnais, Tokyo, Japan
  • Dentsu Incorporated, Tokyo, Japan
  • Export-Import Bank of Japan, Tokyo, Japan
  • Ginza Nikko Hotel, Tokyo, Japan
  • Hotel New Otani, Tokyo, Japan
  • Hotel Vitosha, Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Imperial Palace Residence, Tokyo
  • Japanese Consulate General, New York
  • Japanese Cultural Center, Rome
  • Japanese Embassy, Paris
  • Keio Plaza Intercontinental Hotel, Tokyo
  • Korakuen Stadium, Tokyo
  • Meijeza Theater, Tokyo
  • National Gymnasium, Tokyo
  • Nichinan Cultural Center, Miyazaki, Japan
  • Nikken Sekkei, Tokyo
  • Palace Hotel, Tokyo
  • Private airplane for Time-Life, Inc.
  • Teijin Research Center, Osaka
  • The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan, Tokyo
  • The Tokyo American Club
  • Toyota Motor Co., Toyota, Japan
  • Tsukuba Country Club, Tsukuba, Japan
  • Union Bank of Switzerland, Tokyo
  • Yamanashi Citizens’ Hall, Kofu, Japan
  • Yasuda Trust Banking Co., Tokyo
  • Zojoji Temple, Tokyo

Shinoda-san’s work is collected by the Emperor and Empress of Japan. Her work appears in the Imperial Palace and train.

Other Artists in The Reingold Gallery Collection