Found Art: Fish Story

How one kayak fisherman is using the Japanese art of fish printing to create pretty fish prints.


In the mid-19th century, Japanese fishermen documented a catch by inking one side of the fish and stamping it onto rice paper. Dubbed gyotaku, the process has become an art form—one that’s hooked Joe Higgins, a kayak fisherman. Higgins, who is also the creative director at Rattle Advertising in Beverly, often enhances his images with watercolors—and in the case of this black sea bass, superimposed a scan of the original inking onto a chart of Buzzards Bay, where the fish was caught. “Usually, the uglier the fish, the prettier the print,” he says.

Original gyotaku prints, $300–$1,200; Joe’s Fresh Fish Prints, Artists Row, 24 New Derby St., Salem,