AMANO: THE COMPLETE PRINTS OF YOSHITAKA AMANO (A J!-ENT Book Review)
March 8, 2008 by Dennis Amith
BOOK TITLE: AMANO: THE COMPLETE PRINTS OF YOSHITAKA AMANO
Published in 2003 by Harper Collins International
PAGE COUNT: 262 Pages
I have always been passionate about the artwork of Amano Yoshitaka. My first time seeing his artwork was through the “Final Fantasy” video games and “Vampire Hunter D” anime.
According to the book, “AMANO: THE COMPLETE PRINTS OF YOSHITAKA AMANO” showcases the hundres of whimsical, luxurious and sometimes terrifying prints he created during the last decade. Amano began his career working on fan-favorite anime such as “Gatchaman” (G-Force) and popular graphic novels such as The Sandman: The Dreamhunters. But his artistic genius really beagn to flower when he turned his attention ot the medium of printmaking. Drawing from influences as diverse as Art Nouveau and Art Deco, American comics, Japanese ukiyo-e and traditional fantasy illustration, Amano’s prints capture a breathtaking world.
There are literally hundreds of his prints featured. Many that are full page, half page or a quarter page long. So, you get to see the detail of his work which I find so inspiring, dramatic, dark and just incredible. Also, the heavier, matted paper used for the book is very much appreciated.
The book features not only his printworks but a written afterword by Unno Hiroshi (author on many books on music, art and collaborated with Amano for the book “Alice Erotica”), biography and a list of print works by Amano.
I have always looked at Amano’s artwork as unique and each time I look at the pages of this book, I am always left in awe and always wonder what went through his mind in the creation of each piece.
His ability to take traditional Japanese art, blend it with modern art and just to come up with these fantastic images is incredible.
As for the book, the majority featured in the book are large prints but the other 25% of the book consists of a catalogue which features the data from the lithographs which include title, type, copies printed, image size, paper type, workshop name, date of product and completion/release.
Featured are his prints for “Arabian Nights”, “Ladder to Heaven”, “The Tale of Genji”, “Amour Series”, “The Fairytale”, “Alice Erotica”, “NY Salad”, “Elf Fantasy”, “Poem Series”, “Hero”, “Die Zauberflote”, “Rosso” and prints from various novels, animation and video games. And much more!
The only caveat that I can find that I think people may find is that there are no “Final Fantasy” prints included in this book and some may prefer all pages to be full page art.
But really, for an Amano Yoshitaka book, this is probably the best book to own if you are fan of his artwork. There is so much of his work featured and it’s just a worthy collection for fans of his artwork.
This book is simply a must own for fans of Amano Yoshitaka’s work.
When the book was first released, it may have been pricey at the time but you can find the book (used) for under $20. Understandably, Amano’s work is not for everyone. Some fan find his art, especially in this book, a bit too dark for their taste. Others might be upset that there are no “Final Fantasy” artwork in this entire book.
But for fans who truly appreciate his work, this book featuring his prints is the best out there. Incredible, beautiful and simply amazing!
* Page artwork linked from Amazon.com
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