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Welcome to my Sumi-e Gallery!
Click a small picture on the left to view a larger version of it here.
Sumi-e (pronounced soo-me-ay) refers to a monochrome painting executed on paper or silk in so-called sumi or Chinese ink (i.e., a black pigment made from soot and glue).
Sumi-e originated in China and was introduced to Japan by Zen monk painters. It is still quite popular in modern Japan, as is demonstrated by the many sumi-e classes taught in local community centers.
I have been practicing sumi-e in such an art class on a bi-weekly basis for several years now. What fascinates me most about this painting style is the intensity of expression that can be reached with minimal means, such as a single color, a few well-chosen brush strokes, and a lot of empty space--room for imagination...
Although most of my paintings are still branded by my Japanese sources and environment, I intend to free myself from these influences eventually and to apply this unique Eastern technique to Western motifs. That would offer a fresh approach to an Asian eye while bringing this art form closer to a Westerner.
For a more exotic touch, I am displaying my paintings in original (mostly traditional) Japanese frames.
Tip: This page is best viewed at a monitor resolution of 1024 x 768 dpi on a 17" monitor.
(6th-century Chinese Buddhist priest)
© 1999 Benoît Schütz