Jacoulet, Paul, (1896–1960)

Jacoulet, Paul, (1896–1960)

The Jacoulet family moved from France to Tokyo in 1899 when Paul Jacoulet was three years old. He completed his education in Tokyo as the only Westerner in his class, and was immersed in Japanese culture for the duration of his life. Jacoulet’s artistic inclinations intensified in the 1920s as he continued the study of oil painting and ukiyo-e painting. He also played the shamisen, a three-stringed musical instrument, and practiced gidayu, the chanted and sung texts of the traditional puppet theatre. During this time, Jacoulet studied thousands of Japanese woodblock prints and was drawn to the work of the Edo period artist Kitagawa Utamaro (1753-1806). Following in the collaborative tradition of ukiyo-e printmaking, Jacoulet worked with Japanese artists to create a distinct body of woodblock prints between 1934 and 1960. He collaborated with many distinguished carvers and printers.

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