Neo Nihonga (Neo Japanese-style painting)

Neo Nihonga is an art concept formulated in 2001 by Tenmyouya as an antithesis to modern Japanese-style painting, an art form that has lost substance sticking to traditional materials like mineral pigments, glue and ink, in its role as an opposite concept to modern Western-style painting. Neo Nihonga is a new genre using new materials such as acrylic paint, while at once referring to characteristic features of Japanese art, such as a traditional Japanese line drawing, decorative, symbolic and playful elements. As for subjects, it aims to be a true contemporary art portraying contemporary Japan while quoting the classical essence of Japanese art.

Neo Nihonga was proposed as a means for interrupting the post-Meiji concept of nihonga, and breaking free from the hierarchical structure that has been dominating the Japanese art world since the modern age, and at the same time, as a possible alternative ground in the discussion of Japanese contemporary art history.

Moreover, Neo Nihonga respects and modernizes the varied expressive styles of Japanese painting prior to the establishment of the modern nihonga concept. In short, Neo Nihonga takes over and develops the spirit of ukiyo-e and other forms of Japanese classical painting for contemporary relevance.