Mokuhanga: japanese xylography workshop

Friday November 29, 2019, 10:30 ÷ 17:00
Galleria Nobili
Via Marsala, 4
20121 Milano (MI)

Mokuhanga lab
Japanese woodcut workshop
Kōyō 紅葉
Gingko leaves in autumn
held by Asako Hishiki

Mokuhanga workshop

The workshop is aimed at learning the principles of the Japanese xylography mokuhanga.
This traditional technique assists the development of concentration, careful observation, and manual skills thanks to the use of natural materials. During the day we will deal with history, tools, materials, engraving, and printing. Students will learn how to transfer the chosen image on one or two matrices using the kentō, the Japanese register; each block will be engraved with traditional tools and methods, subsequently applying water-based pigments; the use of the baren on more matrices will complete the polychrome printing.
We will go deeper into the work of the japanese artist Kato Teruhide.

A work by Kato Teruhide

Laboratory programme

  • historical background on Japanese xylography
  • differences between Japanese and Italian xylography
  • overview of the materials used
  • study of the detail of the drawing we selected and its transfer on a wooden matrix
  • carving
  • Printing tests on canvas

Materials to transfer the drawing from the paper to the matrix

  • drawing (proposed by the teacher)
  • glossy paper
  • carbon paper
  • pencils (B,H)
  • wooden matrices

Materials for matrix carving

  • four types of gouges (knife gouge, nail gouge, flat gouge, pointed gouge)
  • Anti-slip mat

Tools used in mokuhanga japanese xylography and some objects made with this technique

Printing materials

  • different types of paper
  • sumi 墨 ink
  • xylography ink
  • tempera and watercolor
  • traditional xylography and current use brushes
  • glue (rice starch)
  • baren, 馬連
  • small white bowls
  • buckets and rags to clean brushes
  • pink paper newspapers

Asako Hishiki biography

To learn more about personal and collective exhibitions, please see Asako Hishiki bio


  • Max 11 students
  • Cost € 120
  • Suitable for all levels, no experience required
  • All the materials are supplied by the artist
  • The matrix and the prints produced remain the property of the student
  • For subscriptions please write to:

Cancellation and non-attendance

If the cancellation occurs:
  • 10 or more days before the course: we will refund 85% of the amount
  • 7,8,9 days before: 50% refund
  • less than 7 days or non-attendance: no refund

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