Eyes & Curiosity—Flowers in the Field（SINGAPORE）
16 March - 21 April 2019
Group exhibition by Kato Ai (Ai☆Madonna), Kimura Ryoko, Kobayashi Satoshi, and Mizuno Rina
Artists-led Exhibition Walk-through: Saturday, 16 March 2019, 5pm – 6pm
Live Painting Performance by Kato Ai (Ai☆Madonna): Saturday, 16 March 2019, 6pm – 9pm
Opening Reception: Saturday, 16 March 2019, 6pm – 9pm
Mizuma Gallery is pleased to announce Eyes & Curiosity—Flowers in the Field, a group exhibition by four Japanese artists selected by Executive Director, Mizuma Sueo. Showing for the first time at Mizuma Gallery, Singapore, Kato Ai (Ai☆Madonna), Kimura Ryoko, Kobayashi Satoshi, and Mizuno Rina will present artworks that embody new interpretations of traditional techniques and explore the relevance of old ideals in today’s society.
Known for solely painting girls in her works, Kato Ai (Ai☆Madonna) visualises feminine beauty through Bishojo motifs of female figures. Her interest stems from her belief that girls are the most beautiful subjects to illustrate. Kato Ai’s drawings and paintings depict the idea of “untouchable” beauty that exists only in the world of anime or manga—devoid of real physical contact.
Through the use of Nihonga or neo-traditional Japanese painting style, Kimura Ryoko’s works focus on her quintessential motif of ikemen (good-looking men). By reversing the concept of Bijin-ga (the representation of beautiful women in Japanese art), Kimura Ryoko portrays ikemen in the contemporary Eastern world from a woman’s perspective.
Having studied woodblock printing when he was twelve years old, Kobayashi Satoshi developed a strong interest in this artmaking technique. To him, drawing, carving, and scratching on wood are primitive ways that allow him to freely express his ideas and imaginations. In this exhibition, Kobayashi Satoshi showcases his new work using disjointed pieces of wooden boards attempting to manifest the feelings of discord and modesty. Each piece of boards contains wooden carvings of a certain aspect of nature. When the pieces are connected, each individual imagery comes together in interaction, merging into one singular artwork representing the chaos and beauty of nature and man.
Each of Mizuno Rina’s work consists of multiple layers on a flat surface that encapsulates a sense of three-dimensionality. Upon closer look, we are able to observe the textural richness of the oil painting. The intricate details in her works are inspired by Turkish miniature paintings, while her brushstrokes are influenced by the ink paintings of Jakuchu Ito (Japan, 1719 – 1800). Mizuno Rina’s attention to texture and colours is reflected in her use of unprimed hemp canvas and her exploration of various shades and tones produced by mixing different colours of oil paints.
This exhibition will be opened with an exhibition walk-through by Kato Ai (Ai☆Madonna), Kimura Ryoko, Kobayashi Satoshi, and Mizuno Rina on Saturday, 16 March 2019, from 5pm to 6pm. Exhibition walk-through will be conducted in Japanese with English translation. It will be followed by an exhibition vernissage and live painting performance by Kato Ai (Ai☆Madonna) from 6pm to 9pm.
About the Artists
Kato Ai (b. 1984, Tokyo, Japan), also known as Ai☆Madonna, graduated from the Tokyo Metropolitan Art High School, Tokyo, Japan in 2003, and the Bigakko Art School, Tokyo, Japan in 2004, where she studied under artist Aida Makoto. She had her first solo exhibition KYUPIN at Mizuma Action, Tokyo, Japan (2009); followed by AI☆MADONNA Trick Art 9F at BT Gallery, Tokyo, Japan (2011); HATSU-MOE – LOVE & Dragon – at Diginner Gallery Workshop, Tokyo, Japan (2012); and Ambiguous U Meeha Love at AWAJI Café and Gallery, Tokyo, Japan (2017). Kato Ai (Ai☆Madonna) also took part in various group exhibitions around the globe, such as in Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Poland, and the United States. Kato Ai lives and works in Tokyo, Japan.
Kimura Ryoko (b. 1971, Kyoto, Japan) graduated with a Master’s Degree in Mural Painting at the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music, Tokyo, Japan in 1997. Her previous exhibitions include the most recent Tenderheartedness at Kyoto-ba, Kyoto, Japan (2018); IkemenMärchen at Artcomplex Center of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan (2017); Beaute Animale de L’Homme at Galerie Vanessa Rau, Paris, France (2015); Paradise at Mizuma Art Gallery, Tokyo, Japan (2011); and Prince Come True at The Butchart International Contemporary Art Space, Taipei, Taiwan (2008) and at GalleryES, produced by Mizuma Action, Tokyo, Japan (2007). Kimura Ryoko has participated in numerous group exhibitions in Japan as well as in Korea, Taiwan, China and the United States. Her works are in the public collection of Spencer Museum of Art, Kansas, United States, and Honolulu Museum of Art, Honolulu, United States. Kimura Ryoko lives and works in Tokyo, Japan.
Kobayashi Satoshi (b. 1981, Chiba, Japan) graduated from Tokyo Art University in 2005, where he majored in Japanese Painting and a Master’s Degree in Japanese Painting from Tokyo Art University, Tokyo, Japan in 2007. His past solo exhibitions to date include the recent Of Craft and Carving at UOB Art Gallery, Singapore (2018); The World of Living Things at Gallery Zerohachi, Ginza, Tokyo (2014); Pink Eyes Girl at Gallery Sakamaki, Ginza Tokyo; and his first solo exhibition Kobayashi Satoshi also at Gallery Sakamaki, Ginza, Tokyo (2010) amongst others. He is the recipient of the Bronze Prize at the UOB Painting of the Year in 2016 and was shortlisted for The Ueno Royal Museum Award by Ueno Royal Museum, Biennale Ome by Ome City Educational Committee, and Art Award Debut by Gekkan Bijutsu Art Magazine in 2013. Kobayashi Satoshi lives and works in Singapore.
Mizuno Rina (b. 1989, Aichi, Japan) graduated with a Master’s Degree in Oil Painting from Tama Art University, Tokyo, Japan in 2014 and a B.A. in Oil Painting from Nagoya University of Arts, Aichi, Japan in 2012. She held her first solo exhibition at Taimatz, Tokyo in 2012, and since then, she has mounted numerous solo exhibitions such as the recent mizu no musubime at Gallery Ohrin, Ibaraki, Japan (2018); nested structure at Roppongi Hills A/D Gallery, Tokyo, Japan (2018); ARKO2017 Rina Mizuno at Ohara Museum of Art, Okayama, Japan (2017); and Boundary line at Dai-ichi Life South Gallery, Tokyo, Japan (2016). Mizuno Rina has participated in groups exhibitions including The Encyclopedia of Masamichi Katayama Life is hard…Let`s go shopping at Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery, Tokyo, Japan (2017); Fruitfulness – Contemporary Art in Toyokawa at Toyokawa City Sakuragaoka Museum, Aichi, Japan (2015); and AICHI TRIENNALE 2013 at Aichi, Japan (2013). Mizuno Rina was also the recipient of the Mitsubishi Estate Co. Ltd. Prize in 2014; Art Award Tokyo Marunouchi in 2014 and 2012; Yuji Wakamatsu Prize in 3331 Art Fair – Various Collectors’ Prizes in 2014; H. P. France Prize in 2012; and Excellence Award / First Prize of Brighton University Award from Nagoya University of Arts Degree Show in 2012. Her works are in the public collection of Daiwa Press, Japan, Mitubishi Estate, Japan, The Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company Limited, Japan, JAPIGOZZI Collection, Switzerland, and Ohara Museum, Kurashiki, Japan. Mizuno Rina lives and works in Aichi, Japan.