Author Archives: Ryan Holmberg

Garo no. 72 (February 1970), special issue on Hayashi Seiichi.

Manga vs. Art History: Hayashi Seiichi at SISJAC

Modern art, comics, and some words with Seiichi Hayashi. Continue reading

 
Koga Masao, “Longing for Your Shadow,” lyric and music sheet (Victor Records, January 1931); Mori Shin'ichi, Longing for Your Shadow, 12” LP (Victor Records, May 1968), cover art by Iwata Sentarō.

Enka Gekiga: Hayashi Seiichi’s Pop Music Manga

If his autobiographical reminisces are true, then Hayashi Seiichi’s literary life began with falling tears. As he recalled the early 50s in “Azami Light” (“Keikō,” 1972): “‘Look at you sniveling like a little girl,’ said my mother. She turned her … Continue reading

 
Douglas Fairbanks, Robin Hood (1922).

The Mysterious Clover: Matsumoto Katsuji, Douglas Fairbanks, and the Reformed Modern Girl

Last time, I argued that one of the first commodity icons of Japanese kawaii was probably based on a mix of Grace Drayton’s New Kids dolls and American jazz age cartooning. This time I want to focus on a sixteen-page comic published as a premium insert furoku for “a girl’s best friend,” the magazine Shōjo no tomo, in April 1934. Continue reading

 
Matsumoto Katsuji, illustration for Hans Christian Andersen's What the Moon Saw, Shōjo no Tomo (January 1934).

Matsumoto Katsuji and the American Roots of Kawaii

A look at shojo manga pioneer Matsumoto Katsuji (1904-86). Continue reading

 
Shinohara Ushio,

Shinohara Ushio’s Action Cartooning

A lost body of work we might simply call “action cartooning,” a name that captures the two art historical currents that underwrite Ushio Shinohara’s figurative work, Continue reading

 
Leora Smith, Odawara (1946-47).

Seduction of the Innocent, Hiroshima 1950

An interesting research detour. Continue reading

 
Mayukh Choudhury.

Bengal’s Drighangchoo: An Interview with Deeptanil Ray

I had been under the impression that Comix India, inaugurated in 2010, was the first amateur comics magazine in India. It might have been the first with significant heft and geographical reach. Chronologically, however, there is at least one precedent. Continue reading

 
Rita Circulating Library, Marine Lines, Mumbai.

Poor Little Rich Boys: The Art of the Mumbai Circulating Library

Upon publishing the interview with Leaping Windows Comics Café, I was informed by an elder Indian that rental bookstores – locally called “circulating libraries” – are not uncommon in Mumbai. There used to be more, I was told, but there … Continue reading