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Sadao Watanabe

Sadao Watanabe (1913-1996), born in Ushigome, Tokyo, was Japan’s foremost Christian artist known for his colorful representation of biblical scenes depicted with the traditional Japanese folk art of stencil dying. He began as an apprentice to a dyer and learned the technique of katazome, stencil printing, and started to use this technique with paper. His work placed biblical narratives in Japanese settings and focused on communicating his Christian beliefs to other Japanese.  In 1985, he completed 380 prints, 80 dealt with the old testament, 280 with the new testament, and the remainder are of Biblically related stories. His prints are part of many international collections, including the Vatican Museum and National Galleries in Washington, D.C. and London.

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