The Australian National University Library holds rich and diverse historic collections that are significant not only for their rarity, but for the continued impact they have on research and researchers worldwide. The ANU Library 'Colour a collection' series showcases our special and rare collections by using historical material in an unusual and creative way, whilst also offering students an outlet to relax and practice mindfulness.
This year's colouring book features selected manga by Katsushika Hokusai (1760 – 1849), Japanese artist and wood block printmaker from the Edo period, widely known for creating the iconic print, The Great Wave off Kanagawa. Throughout Hokusai’s life, he had limited contact with the wider world, as Japan had closed borders until the late 1850s. When the borders of Japan opened for the first time in 200 years, Hokusai’s prints were exported in large numbers, initiating Western interest in Japanese manga and influencing styles of Chinese painting and art outside of Japan.
The Hokusai Manga, meaning ‘Hokusai's Sketches’ from the ANU Library Rare Book Collection is a set of ten volumes published in 1814–1878. The style of Hokusai’s Manga is not the continuous storytelling manga that we see today, but rather individual sketches of landscapes, flora, fauna, spirits and everyday life, some reflect a touch of humour.
Download the colouring book from the ANU Library website or pick up a print copy from any branch.