Simply Haiku: A Quarterly Journal of Japanese Short Form Poetry
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Jerry Dreesen, Editor
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Haiga is a traditional Japanese technique combining brush and ink painting called sumi-e or other brush painting techniques combined with a haiku in hand painted calligraphy. The painting and haiku are created as one art form with great attention being paid to composition and simplicity, leaving adequate white space in which to meditate its meaning. A “chop” or hand carved stamp is used by the artist as a signature and/or a symbol of the meaning of the haiga. As in any traditional or pure haiku, the haiga requires the essence of Japanese culture and simplicity, written to describe a moment in time which has been experienced by the haijin.

There is another form of traditional haiga, namely Japanese woodblock prints. These prints assume the same essence of Japanese sensibilities, keeping them simple but artfully composed.

It is not the purpose of this introduction to go into a detailed description of these techniques - there are many sources that can provide that information on the web or in libraries. The goal here is to foster an appreciation for this delicate and remarkable art form by providing the opportunity to view these works of art and meet the artists.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any comments concerning the art of traditional haiga or the artists featured here.

Copyright 2006: Simply Haiku