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“Jecoration – Decorative Expressions of Japanese Art and Their Influences” curated by Yuki Ideguchi

Saturday, May 2, 2015 – Sunday, May 17, 2015

Supported by The Asahi Shimbun Foundation, The Japan Foundation, New York

Exhibition Overview

“Jecoration – Decorative Expressions of Japanese Art and Their Influences,” a group exhibition of seven New York-based artists (Masaaki Sato, Tomokazu Matsuyama, Fumiko Toda, Yuki Ideguchi, Paweł Wojtasik, Beñat Lopez Iglesias and Tang-Wei Hsu) whose works have been influenced by the expressions of Japanese art.

J-Labo has gallery spaces on the basement and third floor, but for this occasion, we renovated a space on the ground floor temporary, which is directly connected to a larger gallery in the basement to create a seamless experience for the visitors. Over twenty artworks from the participating artists including paintings, sculptures and video installation were displayed at the spacious galleries on the ground floor and basement. In order to foster the learning experience of the visitors, the panels explaining the history of Japanese art and characteristics of its decorative expressions were displayed at the entrance of the gallery.

We also interviewed the participating artists about their work and influences they had from Japanese expressions, and made the interviews into a video. The video was played at the gallery constantly during the exhibition. Many visitors commented that it was a good tool to learn about the works as well as the artists themselves.

Masaaki Sato: His signature motif is the depictions of New York City. His painstakingly detailed works are deeply linked to this cosmopolitan city.

Tomokazu Matsuyama: The decorative and planar expressions in his artworks are similar to those of Japanese traditional paintings.

Fumiko Toda: Painting of plants with golden back grounds is a specific technique in traditional Japanese art, showing a resemblance to Kacho-ga (painting of flowers and birds).

Tang-Wei Hsu: He grew up watching Japanese Anime and reading Manga. You can see the influence from Japanese art in his decorative expression stylized with lines.

Yuki Ideguchi: His expressions of the visual patterns are also common in the most established traditional Japanese paintings. He’s in the process of exploring a completely new form of expression.

Beñat Lopez Iglesias: The main focus of his work is the human figure, both physical and psychological. and the nature of human relationships.

Pawel Wojtasik: A Polish artist known for his film works and paintings. He acquired bodhisattva zen way (Dai Bosatsu Zen Do), his artworks show a lot of connections to Zen philosophy.

Special Events

J-Collabo presented an opera performance, a lecture and artist talk with the “Jecoration” exhibition. At the opening   reception on Saturday, May 2, Mr. Ideguchi, one of the artists and the curator of the exhibition and Mr. Masaaki Sato made speeches to introduce the exhibition followed by a performance of a special guest Mr. Nobu Momma, singing songs depicting four seasons including Beñat Lopez Iglesias Paweł Wojtasik “Karamatsu.” Some of the participating artists joined us at the opening and explained their works to the visitors. On Saturday, May 16, we invited a guest lecturer, a Professor Emerita, Columbia University, Miyeko Murase, to give the visitors an academic lecture on Soga Shohaku, a renowned painter of the Edo Period known for his distinctive style and theme. On the same day, Mr. Sato gave a speech about his life as an artist and talked about his works on display. Art coordinator, Ms. Sacchi Shimoda joined Mr. Sato and discussed the topics including the influences of Japanese art to the western art world.

Masaaki Sato

Tomokazu Matsuyama

Fumiko Toda

Yuki Ideguchi

Paweł Wojtasik

Beñat Lopez Iglesias

Tang-Wei Hsu

Works List


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