Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Lynn E. Trank


An exploration of the intaglio processes as influenced by the woodblock style of Kitagawa Utamaro is examined in this paper.

A brief introductory section is devoted to the history of European and Japanese printmaking. The Japanese, for the most part, used woodblock prints while the European artists more frequently made intaglio prints. The European intaglio prints were the work of one man while the more complicated woodblock prints were developed by the collective efforts of Japanese craftsmen.

The intaglio technique allows the artist to work with one plate, but many blocks of wood may be needed for effective linear design in the Japanese print.

To achieve the magnificent lines and colors in the Japanese prints, Utamaro embellished his style through beautiful designs of women.

Utamaro, the greatest print designer of the Golden-Age, was an inspiration to the linear style that was used to explore the intaglio process.

In subsequent sections, the intaglio process is explained and compared to the complicated relief process as practiced by the Japanese. Intaglio techniques and materials are described to give an idea of how they were affected by the metal plate that was used for printing.

Five color plates follow the text and present examples of the way Utamaro's style can be utilized when using the intaglio process instead of the complicated Japanese relief process. Three examples of the work by the artist Kitagawa Utamaro are included.

Included in

Printmaking Commons