What is Haiga?

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With the ever-rising popularity of haiku, you may have seen haiku paired with art. The art could be a painting, a sketch or even a photograph. As you might expect, there’s actually a name for this and it’s “haiga”. Haiga is a natural and wonderful extension of haiku.

A Traditional Haiga:  A Little Cuckoo Across a Hydrangea by Yosa Buson.

A Traditional Haiga: A Little Cuckoo Across a Hydrangea by Yosa Buson.

The word means “haikai drawing”, and it is a style of Japanese painting that merges both image and words. They are typically painted by haiku poets and were accompanied by a haiku poem. Haiga celebrate simple, yet profound observations of the everyday world. While traditional haiga were painted using traditional Japanese implements and methods, haiga styles vary widely and were often quite unorthodox.

Traditional haiga are still produced today. However, many contemporary artists, particularly in the Western world, create haiga with modern technology coupling haiku with digital imagery, photography or other forms of media. See my attempt at haiga at the top of this post. Other examples of excellent haiga can be found on Sannel Larson’s blog, Sannel’s World of Poetry. Please give it a look and don’t forget to leave a comment. Bloggers live for comments! 😀

Category: By the Poetic Fool, Haiga, Haiku, Nature | No comments yet


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