The Octopus is a delicate creature that takes a certain finesse for Dwight Hwang to capture in Gyotaku print. In real life, the Octopus can be an elusive creative, sneaking away through tiny openings, changing it's color to match it's surroundings - anything to hide from view. Even when being captured in Gyotaku print, the nature of the shy octopus can remain hidden and according to the artist, it is all too easy to print a lifeless and flat looking creature. But through Hwang's gentle expertise and handling, the print reveals a truly emotional and elegant beauty of the Octopus.
This is a reproduction of the original print that has been made on Washi paper, which is the traditional handmade Japanese paper that Dwight uses for his prints, so it is the closest to the quality of his original prints that you can get. Each one is hand stamped with the artist's signature.
Conceived in mid-19th century Japan as a way to record impressive fishing catches, gyotaku prints are sublime tributes to the struggle, and the respect, between man and the denizens of the deep. As one of the few artists practicing the traditional Japanese methods involving sumi and washi (ink and paper), Dwight Hwang's remarkable works reveal a tenderness and reverence for both the fish he is immortalizing and the legacy of the gyotaku craft.
Click here to see a beautiful video of Dwight Hwang demonstrating the traditional Japanese art form of Gyotaku.