Toshio Bando (1895-1973)
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Toshio Bando was a Japanese born painter who lived and worked in Paris. Like his contemporary Japanese painters living in Europe, Bando’s work has a very unique and beautiful quality that blends two worlds of painting; traditional Japanese and Impressionistic European.
Bando’s real name was Tamotsu and sadly as a little boy, lost his mother who died when he was seven. This had an effect on Bando’s artistic work and throughout his catalogue; one can note that he gives his work a maternal edge.
Untitled Baby Portrait, 1944 Kimi
Bando began studying under Fujishima Takeji in 1913, a master who had studied in France and Italy. Perhaps it was this influence that interested Bando so much in the French style of painting, particularly in the works of Cezanne.
Portrait De Chien
By 1922, after having successful exhibitions in Japan, Bando moved to Paris where he and painter Tsugughara Foujita became fast friends. They shared a studio and an apartment together, all while Foujita was gaining a great deal of notoriety.
Vase de Fleurs
Despite the fact that they were friends, Bando would often resent the fact that critics would compare his work to Foujita’s. Perhaps it is because little was known at the time about Japanese/European art and critics were eager to file any Asian painter in Europe as being “like Foujita.”
From 1924-1933, Bando found relative success as a painter, and even though he was finding success, was not happy. This reflected deeply in his paintings during this era. Because he could not express himself in his art the way he wanted to, his paintings at this time took on a somber sense of loneliness.
While a Japanese flair is certainly indicative of a Bando original, he painted a number of different subjects often. Still-life flowers in vases seem to dominate his oeuvre, many without titles.
Untitled Flowers, 1940 pastels
By 1944, Bando had become father to a daughter, Kimi, which brought joy into his art again. He painted a number of self-portraits with Kimi in them for a period of time. Bando continued to produce a great deal of work up until 1957 when his health started to fail.
Self-Portrait with Kimi
After 1957, Bando exhibited his work less and less. Sadly, he died after falling down a flight of stairs in his home in 1973.
Bando produced many collections of work in his native Japan before becoming well-known in Paris. This leaves a great deal of possibility for some of his previously unauthenticated work to exist in both Asia and France. Bando worked in oil and pastels and was a very prolific painter. However, his lack of titles on his work may have caused some of his paintings to be overlooked or wrongly authenticated. If you believe you have a Toshio Bando work, Contact Art Experts.
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