Japan

Archive of the Mendocino Heritage Artists

BILL ZACHA’S Japan

Tokaido Journey Boxed Set
The Tokaido Journey Serigraphs
Introduction to Tokaido Journey
Tokaido Journey, the book

Miasa Sister City (1980). Mendocino's Sister City. Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198002*
Miasa Sister City (1980). Miasa (now Miasa-Omachi) is Mendocino’s Sister City. Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198002*

Winter’s Offering, Miasa

Winter's Offering, Miasa (1981). Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198105*
Winter’s Offering, Miasa (1981). Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198105*

In 2006 the village of Miasa and the village of Yasaka merged with the near by city of Omachi, also in Kitaazumi District, Nagano Prefecture.

For over 2000 years the mountain village of Miasa had been famous for its hemp. Although  hemp had been a mainstay of  Japanese economy and culture since prehistoric times, in 1947 the US military government passed a law which made it a crime to cultivate hemp without a license, and all agricultural hemp production ended in 1965. Today Miasa Mura (“beautiful hemp village”) is famous for its 300 year old Hemp House (a national heritage site), and its hemp museum (Asa no Yakata), both donated to the town by former village head Mr. Nakamura. Source: Japanhemp.org

Miasa Hemp Museum
Miasa Hemp Museum
The Miasa Hemp House
Miasa Hemp House
Construction detail of the Miasa Hemp House
Construction detail of the Miasa Hemp House
Miasa Hemp House rafters
Miasa Hemp House rafters

Miasa and Mendocino: the Sister Cities and the Peace Plaques

Tsuwano

Tsuwano (1985) Serigraph by Bill Zacha. WZ198506*
Tsuwano (1985). Japanese drums (taikos). Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198506*

Beautiful Tsuwano in Shimane Prefecture is home to Taikodani Inari Jinja shrine with its “1000 vermilion torii.” In 1773 Tsuwano’s lord Kamei Norisada built Taikodani Inari to enshrine a share of the spirit worshipped at the Fushimi Inari in Kyoto, to bring good fortune to him and his people.

Torii at the Taikodani Inari Shrine
Some of the 1000 vermilion torii at the Taikodani Inari shrine in Tsuwano

Shiranuka

Shiranuka (1982). Serigraph by Bill Zacha. WZ198250
Shiranuka (1982). Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198250 Shiranuka is a small town in Hokkaido Prefecture. Its name is from the indigenous Ainu language, approximately translated as “place where the tide washes over the rocky shore.”

Iwakuni Kintaibashi

Iwakuni Kintaibashi (1980). Serigraph by William Zacha.
Iwakuni Kintaibashi (1980). Designed and first built in 1673, the Kintai Bridge in Iwakuni, Yamaguchi Prefecture, became an official National Treasure of Japan in 1922.  Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198001
Kintaibashi at Iwakuni (1880s)
Kintaibashi at Iwakuni (1880s)
Iwakuni Kintaibashi today
Iwakuni Kintaibashi today

Suzuki-en-Hagi

Suzuki-en-Hagi (1985). Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198504
Suzuki-en-Hagi (1985). In Japan, sacred wells like this allow pilgrims to wash their hands, as part of the purification process before entering a shrine. Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198504 The ancient city of Hagi is one of the few places where a Shinto shrine and a Buddhist temple have coexisted peacefully for centuries.
At the summit of Mount Shizuki on the grounds of Hagi Castle which was built by the Mōri clan in 1608.

Hagi

Hagi (1985). Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198508*
Hagi (1985). Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198508* For over 250 years Hagi was the political center of Chōshū Domain in Nagato Province.

Nara

Nara (1980). Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198004
Nara (1980). Traditional Japanese mushiko mado window. Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198004*
Street view through mushiko mado windows, Japan.
Street view through mushiko mado windows, Japan.
Mushiko mado windows, Nara.

Floating World

Floating World (1985). Fragile beauty created for the title page of Tokaido Journey, the boxed set, referencing the floating world of Japan’s Edo Period, a celebration of sophisticated ephemeral pleasures, a flowering of theatre, art, music. Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198556
Tokaido Journey boxed set, open to title page, and a list of the 55 stations of William Zacha's Tokaido Road journey. Limited edition (1985).
Tokaido Journey boxed set, open to title page, and a list of the 55 stations of William Zacha’s Tokaido Road journey. Limited edition (1985). Tokaido Journey Boxed Set

More travels in Asia

Asian Landscape

Asian Landscape (1964). Ink wash drawing by William Zacha. WZ196410
Asian Landscape (1964). Ink wash drawing by William Zacha. WZ196410

Yangtse

Yangtse (1982). The Yangtse River, the longest river in Asia, and third longest in the world, has been at the heart of Chinese history and culture for millennia. Serigraph by William Zacha. WZ198201

Inquiries
To learn about the availability of individual William Zacha serigraphs and paintings, please contact Mendocino Art Center Gallery Director Leslie Campbell by email, or phone her at 707-477-9595.

What is a Serigraph?
Miasa and Mendocino: Sister Cities
Return to The Art of William Zacha
Return to William Zacha