Skip to navigationSkip to content

What ancient Japanese art would look like today—in gifs

Atsuki Segawa
  • Kate Groetzinger
By Kate Groetzinger

Ideas fellow

Published This article is more than 2 years old.

What would ancient artistic masterpieces look like if they were updated to reflect the modern imagination? Japanese artist Atsuki Segawa is tweaking traditional Japanese woodblock prints with 21st century tropes like flying saucers and bullet trains, and the results are mesmerizing. In two delightful collections of gifs, he reprises Ukiyo-e prints from the Edo-period (1615-1868) as sci-fi animations.

In his first collection, Segawa superimposed elements such as speeding bullet trains and UFOs onto traditional scenes of Japanese women and men.

Segawa’s second collection features people from the Edo period using tablets, computers, and TVs in their other otherwise ancient lives. Once completed, the series will include ten gifs, reports Motherboard. Here is a preview:

Follow the artist on Twitter and see more of his work here.

📬 Kick off each morning with coffee and the Daily Brief (BYO coffee).

By providing your email, you agree to the Quartz Privacy Policy.