10.14.2015

Contemporary Japanese Kōgei | KODAMA: Tree Spirit

Contemporary Japanese Kōgei

Exhibition Dates: October 20 – November 14, 2015
Opening Reception: Thursday, October 22, 2015 | 6-8pm
Location: Onishi Gallery, 521 W. 26th Street, New York City
Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 11am – 6pm

 

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Onishi Gallery, one of the only galleries in Chelsea with a specialization in contemporary Japanese art, is pleased to present Contemporary Japanese Kōgei, a finely curated exhibition of works by a selection of Japanese artists at the very top of their fields.

In conjunction with the upcoming exhibition at the Museum of Arts and Design, Japanese Kōgei | Future Forward, the ceramics and metalwork on view at Onishi Gallery challenge the conventional image of “craft”. The translation of the word kōgei, “artisan crafts”, belies the true span of the genre, the colloquial definition of which is constantly in flux. Drawing on traditions that have endured for generations, these artists’ practices are rooted in the past and yet also fully embrace contemporary culture. Many are also the children of modern kōgei masters, and carry on the techniques taught to them by their fathers. Taking inspiration from fashion and design, as well as from other works of contemporary and modern art, these artists create work that serves as a dialogue between Japan’s past and future.

This exhibition focuses on important works by HAGINO Noriko, HANNYA Taiju, HATA Shunsai, KIMURA Moriyasu, KONNO Tomoko, MIZUNO Mineo, ŌHI Toshio, OSHIYAMA Motoko, SHOMURA Hisaki, SUZUKI Miki, TOKUDA Yasokichi IV, and YOSHITA Yukio and also formally introduces the work of the jeweler KOJIMA Joji.

The works on view will highlight a number of traditional techniques utilized in innovative ways, including mokumegane, fukiwake, Kutani porcelain, Ohi and ao-bizen stoneware, as well as many others.

 

For more article, read an Artsy editorial on our current exhibition, “Contemporary Japanese Kogei” that has been published.

 

For more information, please contact Anna Pillow at 212.695.8035 or apillow@onishigallery.com.

 


 

KODAMA: Tree Spirit

Exhibition Dates: October 20 – November 14, 2015
Opening Reception: Thursday, October 22, 2015 | 6-8pm
Location: Onishi Gallery, 521 W. 26th Street, New York City
Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 11am – 6pm

for web

 

Onishi Gallery is pleased to announce the opening on October 22nd of KODAMA: Tree Spirit, Nagai Megumi’s fourth solo exhibition at the gallery. Born in Japan but currently based in New York City, Nagai creates paintings that are Eastern in character and yet Western in technique.

Continuing to explore themes found in Japanese fables and Edo period artworks, Nagai’s newest body of work further emphasizes the relationship she has with her preferred substrate: natural wood. Used by both Japanese and Western artists for centuries, wood is much more than a simple substitute for canvas. The artist views each piece of wood that she uses as having a unique character, and even it’s own spirit, or kodama. In Japanese folklore, kodama are the spirits of trees, and are mentioned alongside demons (oni) and gods (kami) in the Heian period (c. 794-1185) epic, The Tale of Genji. Although described in many different ways throughout history, kodama invariably symbolize the importance of nature and the forest in Japanese culture.

The works on view represent Nagai’s reverence for the kodama within the wood that she uses. Each finished painting is the result of collaboration between the artist and the wood; without the cooperation of the wood grain, the artist would be unable to draw a straight line. Even her palette is determined by the undertones of the wood. In the end, it is only by finding harmony with the kodama that Nagai is able to create her paintings.

Born in Japan in 1951, Nagai received her degree from Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music in 1975. She has exhibited both within the United States and abroad, and her work is held in the permanent collection of the Brooklyn Museum.

For more information, please contact Anna Pillow at 212.695.8035 or apillow@onishigallery.com.