Works Explanation 1
At Dawn after Storm
"At Dawn after Storm"
1981; oil on canvas
112.0x162.0 cm

g Realism is the philosophy of viewing. h
Teruo Sato


Teruo Sato destroyed his two firm picture styles, in this work, such as the sea and the land are not drawn at the same time and the specific object includes a person is not drawn with the sea as background. Strong internal impulse forced him who was faithful to own style to do so. This internal impulse was touched off by revelation which came to only him; when searching a subject of picture on seashore of Fukuura in Aomori Prefecture located in the northern part of Japan, in case of stroll in the early morning after storm passed, at the moment when he saw various drifts thrown up on seashore, he was seized with the revelation. (Refer the Person Part 3-4 of " The World of Teruo Sato ")

Legs of mermaid pictured here separates into two like the human being. Sato tried to pull out sex appeal of the mermaid by this; it was a miracle incident that Sato who was carrying out extreme abstinence in his real life drew such a fictitious existence seems to be an incarnation of eros. However, this fact caused the result that this work could become one suitable for being called his best masterpiece.

– " All kinds of things including garbage are thrown up on seashore in the early morning after passing of storm. There may be a mermaid in it. Yes, I wonder if it ought to be there. " - Teruo Sato

– " Sex appeal of the mermaid as a woman is reduced to half if her legs does not separate into two. "-Teruo Sato

The Sleeping People The Sleeping People
"The Sleeping People at the Underground Passageh series
around 1940's or around 1950's;
; pencil on paper
chacoal on paper 32.5x50.0cm
g This reality- if it is not drawn, where is the true art otherwise? h
Teruo Sato

These works are parts of enormous dessins which Teruo Sato drew at the underground passage around Ueno station in Tokyo from 1946 for about 10 years. He felt deep sympathy to the people drawn in this picture through tragedy which suffered the countrymen commonly by Japan's defeat of World War II. His severe fate that he had been sent to a battlefield after being interrupted at the halfway of schoolwork by scholar mobilization was related to it at the bottom here.

It was a standing characteristic of Sato that he changed a severe state of real life into painting technique. Here, he trained inherent sketching ability with drawing vagrants as models who were frequently tossing about in sleep. Then, basic outline of his later person picture such as emphasizing head of object and omitting a part of body were formed. (Refer the Person Part 1-2 of " The World of Teruo Sato ")

After ten years since the defeat of World War II, beggars for money increasing, his sympathy to the object was extinguished and he put a period to this sketch creating. There was no sympathy like his young day in painting of the homeless, "Autumn", drawn in his last years, and only calm eyes of observer dwelt in it. The homeless of this work is wearing a watch. Interest for remarkable contrast between the homeless and the watch cause him to draw the work. Here is not a bit of tragedy of the defeat of war; furthermore, Sato took humorously pleasure in comedy surrounded the object.

– "Vagrants are different from beggars. Only an idler for money became a beggar at the underground in the times of passing 10 years from the end of war. I will not draw the beggar." - Teruo Sato

Time and Tide Stormy Omen

"Time and Tide"
2000; oil on canvas 80.3x116.7cm

"Stormy Omen"
1984; oil on canvas 72.7x100.0cm

g The sea existed from remote ages. Even if the human race will become extinct from the surface of this earth, only the sea will continue to exist. Therefore, I named it " Yukyu " with awe for the sea. h  
Teruo Sato

The sea of " Time and Tide " was seen from the deck of a ferry headed for Sado Island. The picture of the sea was a special genre for Sato. For him immersed in thorough sketching of persons, pure landscape in which only water and sky are drawn was situated on the completely contrary direction. However, in such a field, he concentrated energy equal to person picture. His awe for the sea made him accomplish it entirely, so the sea was the most important lifework and also was god for him as an atheist. For the purpose of seeking it, going around all the places such as deserted villages and rock beaches in Japan, craving a storm which was not known when it would come, he continued to look for the ideal sea with dreadful zest and persistence. As a result, he reached the rough Sea of Japan in winter.

" Time and Tide " is the last masterpiece which can be called a comprehensive outcome which expressed the ideal sea discovered in this way. He poured forth his feelings of pantheism, finding god within the eternity of the sea, in this work, so he named its Japanese title by himself. (The Japanese original title of " Time and Tide " is " Yukyu " which means the eternity.)

At his picture of the sea, represented by " Time and Tide " and " Stormy Omen ", the wind is effectively used. It breaks monotony which pure landscape leans to have with introducing intense movement and expanse to the level direction to give a strong dramatic effect. (Refer the Person Part 2-5 of " The World of Teruo Sato ")

No Title No Title ZEN
No Title
pastel on paper
No Title
2000;pastel on paper
(image size)
1999; oil on canvas 72.7x50.0cm
g Whole body of nude is a face. h
- Teruo Sato 

All of these three paintings were works drawn in the private academy held at atelier of Satofs house in 1994. The person picture is important genre which forms about 70 percent in the brush of Sato. Precise sketch of human body expresses both mass of object and width of space at the same time, and monotonously pictured perimeter of it emphasizes these. This technique was more advanced and resulted in blank canvas and omission of form and color of a part of human body. These techniques were pursued from dessins of " The Underground Passage Series " until late in life and they were polished. (Refer the Work Part 3-1 of " The World of Teruo Sato ")

Being different from the person picture of public academy in Western Europe, Satofs person picture itself is one accomplished end. Since there is not realistic person pictures in the Orient, it is completely his original style which is nowhere in the world. He continued to draw these works together with and apart from his students. In other words, he was a more thorough painter out of office even in his own private academy than being a teacher.


Charge Young Steeds Gallop 2 The Gate toward North
1983; oil on canvas
50.0x72.7 cm
"Young Steeds Gallop 2"
1990; oil on canvas
50.0x72.2 cm
"The Gate toward North"
2001; pastel on paper
image size; 52.7x43.2 cm

g Let me draw a portrait of male. h
- Teruo Sato 
(Words from his collection pf paintings)


Sato never drew a picture of self-figure but often tried to execute self-projection on canvas with using pretext object or partial symbol. The pictures of Don Quixote, racehorse and tree are these examples. They are located at the powerful, bright and deep stage. This was the reflection of Sato's strong self-affirmation. He got an idea of the Don Quixote's picture from a movie, which he accidentally saw, in which Russian bass singer Shalyapin acted it and the picture of racehorse was drawn according to a plan of picture dealer. Sato was conscious only of an outward thing such as the beauty of hip of dashing horse, the speed sense of crossing fence and the possibility of reappearing Don Quixote's armor realistically, but his true aim was self-expression.(Refer the Work Part 3-2 of " The World of Teruo Sato ")

Tree is generally used as an implement of self-expression of the human being; Sato extended this more and tried general expression of human in addition to the self-expression. Young man is expressed in conversion by a sapling, old man by an old tree and dead man by a decayed tree respectively. In this way Sato who never drew group image of living human beings projected miniature of human society onto the picture of tree. (Refer the Work Part 4 and the Person Part 2-3 of " The World of Teruo Sato ")

All the tree Sato pictured are put on a monotonous intense cold wasteland and suggest a life will of human being who confronts adversity by this. Therefore, since various colors and subtle setting of color tone became unnecessary at the picture of tree, contrary to the picture of sea where these are severely required, pastel which has difficulty in change of color was frequently used.(Refer the Technique Part 4-2-3 of " The World of Teruo Sato ")

Samsara Last Pastel
`Woods of Walpurgis`

2002Gpastel on paper
image size;
"Last Pastel"
2002Gpastel on papar
image size; 48x68.5cm

g It is proper for me that the act of draw is called asceticism. h
Teruo Sato


Satofs picture of tree was an expression form of human in general, including him. Because the self-expression of Sato was always in the center there, a tree was pictured in the bright sunlight which shows self-praise. However, this work is pictured under wintry and cloudy weather. Also, the central tree which shows Sato himself is not filled with power and dignity which overwhelms others. Compared with it, surrounding shrub increases independence, so that it has an appearance that Sato is relative-ized as a member of the human race. When considering that this work was pictured in the previous year of Satofs death, he might have felt approaching death of himself unconsciously through the awareness of being a part of creature which has a finite life.(Refer the Person Part 2-3 of " The World of Teruo Sato ")

This thing also can be seen in three pastels, the last complete works, which were pictured before one month of his death. Since this is a person picture, his self-projection does not exist, but the fact that head of model is colored minimally and powerlessness is conspicuous in her pose seems to show the projection of his bad physical condition.

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