Hello, I am Masako Kitaura of Michioto Publishing. As the year 2022 comes to a close, it has been a challenging year filled with tumultuous events in Japan and around the world. I hope that you are all doing well despite the difficulties.

Today, we are excited to announce a new publication. In February 2023, Michioto Publishing will release the first book of woodblock print artist Kyoko Vendome. Since releasing our first photo book “Noroshi” in 2017, Michioto has focused mainly on publishing photo books. However, we are now interested in expanding our range to include other art books, including those featuring photography. Art that we fall in love with can transcend genre, and we are often drawn to it even when we don’t expect to be.

Kyoko Vendome was born in Toyama, Japan and studied printmaking at Sokei Art Academy in Tokyo. After graduation, she has exhibited her work at art shows and galleries in Japan and internationally. Thirty years ago, she established a studio in Shingu City (formerly Kumanogawa Town), Wakayama Prefecture. In addition to being a talented woodblock print artist, she has also worked as a mountain guide on the Kumano Kodo Trail for many years.

When I view Vendome’s art, I am immediately drawn into her unique worldview inspired by the Kumano region. I believe that only an artist who is deeply attuned to the eternal flow of time in the mountains, the darkness and mystery of nature, can create such vibrant colors and forms. I am not sure why I find the deformities in Vendome’s works so captivating, but I trust in their power and am excited to share them with the world through our small, local publishing company.