Manga For Girls Is Beautifully Illustrated, Reviewed

Shojo Manga, House of Illustration ★★★★☆

Tabish Khan
By Tabish Khan Last edited 18 months ago
Manga For Girls Is Beautifully Illustrated, Reviewed Shojo Manga, House of Illustration 4
Two very feminine works by Keiko Takemiya. Copyright the artist.

Manga is extremely popular in Japan — in fact over a quarter of all printed material in Japan is Manga comics.

But there are lots of different genres and until we saw this exhibition we weren't familiar with Shojo Manga. It translates as girls' comics and these comics are, given the name, unsurprisingly aimed at teenage girls.

Within this one room display are the works of three notable artists who helped propel this genre forward from the 1970s onwards.

Angular features are commonplace in the work of Akiko Hatsu. Copyright the artist.

The angular features of the characters are beautifully drawn by Akiko Hatsu, while her sister Yukiko Kai adopted a more surreal and busier approach to her brilliantly illustrated imagery.

Keiko Takemiya rounds out the trio. Her works challenged the status quo and some of her Manga explored homosexuality, for both male and female characters.

The works aren't originals but high quality reproductions, which have been scanned at such high resolution it's almost impossible to tell that the originals are still in Kyoto.

This may be only a small display but it contains some beautiful artwork and is a perfect companion to the larger Comix Creatrix exhibition next door.

Another Keiko Takemiya (left) accompanied by the more surreal stylings of Yukiko Kai (right). Copyright both artists.

Shojo Manga: The World of Japanese Girls' Comics is on at House of Illustration. 2 Granary Square N1C 4BH, until 12 June. Tickets are £7 for adults and also grant access to the Comix Creatrix exhibition.

Last Updated 27 March 2016