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Toko Shinoda Biography


Toko Shinoda is widely recognised as one of Japan’s greatest artists working with sumi ink paintings and prints. Her art merges traditional calligraphy with modern abstract expressionism. 

She first came to prominence in the 1960’s and 1970’s when she was discovered by the influential art dealer Betty Parsons, alongside works of artists such as Mark Rothko and Jackson Pollock. Trained as a calligrapher, her preference was for the grey and black sumi (Japanese ink) stokes of colours against a filed of white space. She ground her own ink in her house. There is great respect for spatial relationships in her sophisticated, deeply Japanese work.

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