Saburo Hasegawa was born 1906 in Yamaguchi Prefecture in southern Honshu, but due to a job transfer of his father’s, the family soon relocated to Kobe. Hasegawa decided during his high school years that he wanted to pursue a career as an artist. He enrolled at Shinanobashi Academy of Western Painting in Osaka and studied with Narashige Koide. He later transferred to the Department of Aesthetics and Art History at Tokyo Imperial University (now Tokyo University), where he graduated from in 1929. The same year, Hasegawa traveled to the United States and Europe, working in rented ateliers. He particularly admired Picasso’s and Mondrian’s abstract work. A submission to the Salon d’Automne in 1930 was received favorably, resulting in the inclusion of his work into the exhibition. Hasegawa returned to Japan after the death of his father, and continued to be active with solo and group exhibitions, among them the exhibition “New Generation of Western Painting” in 1934.

In 1937, he was one of the founding members of the “Free Artist’s Association” (Jiyu Bijutsu Kyokai). His further activities included the publication of “Abstract Art,” one of the first books on the topic in Japan, as well as many articles and essays of art criticism. In 1950, Hasegawa introduced Isamu Noguchi’s works in Japan. Since around that time, Hasegawa devoted himself to a fusion of “Eastern spirit and Western techniques,” particularly in the media of stone rubbings, woodblock printing and ink painting. In 1954, he visited again the United States as a participant in the “Abstract Art Exhibition: Japan and USA,” and returned to Japan briefly in the following year. He then continued his stay in the United States as a guest professor at the San Francisco Art Institute, where he also lived on the grounds of the Research Center for East Asian Cultures. Major shows in the US were held San Francisco, Oakland and New York. He passed away in 1957.



Ink on Japanese paper


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 Exhibitions (Japanese only) 
171st Gallery Exhibition: 19th Q Ei Exhibition: Beyond Time    2/6 - 2/28