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NAOKO TOSA: Invisible Beauty

Exhibition details

4 August, 2018
2 September, 2018
Event Category:
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NAOKO TOSA: Invisible Beauty 4 August – 2 September 2018 Whitestone Gallery Hong Kong

Whitestone Gallery Hong Kong is pleased to present an exhibition of works by Japanese artist Naoko Tosa. As a pioneering media artist, Tosa is internationally renowned for her use of cutting-edge technology to produce works that channel traditional Japanese culture. Curated by Junji Ito, the exhibition showcases innovative media works from series such as ‘Sound of Ikebana’, ‘Genesis’ and ‘Space Flower’ as well as a new series entitled ‘Four Gods’. These works will be presented alongside a selection of her digital photographs. The exhibition combines art and science to capture the invisible beauty of the world we live in.

Tosa’s 1985 video artwork, entitled ‘An Expression’, features sound she generated using a light sensor which reads the brightness of a TV monitor. It broke new ground for video artwork and was acquired by MoMA New York. Tosa’s most celebrated creation, ‘Sound of Ikebana’ (生け花, means flower arrangement in Japanese) is an extension of this previous work. She passes sound vibrations through coloured fluids like paints and oils and captures the mesmerising movement of colours via high-speed camera. The organic, elegant movements are displayed in colours and textures carefully selected according to cultural and historical colour iconography. ‘Sound of Ikebana’ was projected on the exterior wall of ArtScience Museum in Singapore in 2014 and on over 60 billboards in Times Square, New York in 2017 in partnership with the Japan Society Gallery and Times Square Arts.

While maintaining her Japanese aesthetics, Tosa explores the origin of all life with ‘Genesis’. By capturing the movement and interaction of Japanese ink and dry ice bubbles inside a highly viscous fluid, she re-creates the fluctuating but alluring moment of creation itself. The artist explains it is a “hyper-natural form of art” that is too complicated to grasp and can only be captured using a high-speed camera with 2000 frames per second.

Tosa’s ‘Space Flower’ series is a homage to Rimpa, a historical school of Japanese painting founded in Kyoto in the 17th century. Dramatic composition, luxurious use of precious substances like gold and pearls and backgrounds of gold leaf are common features of Rimpa. The ‘Space Flower’ series combines references from Rimpa painting even though the subject matter is drawn from subjects ranging from Japanese Oiran (a traditional courtesan) to jungles in space. Two works from the series, ‘Thunder God’ and ‘Wind God’ are Tosa’s homage to Sotatsu Tawaraya’s famous piece ‘Wind God and Thunder God.’

Tosa’s latest series of work, ‘Four Gods,’ which was created by giving sound vibration to Urushi (lacquer in Japanese) focuses on four mythological creatures from Chinese constellations, the Blue Dragon, Red Phoenix, Blue Turtle and White Tiger. The four creatures each represent a direction, a season, and also elements of life such as wood, fire, metal and water. The creatures are culturally important in China, Japan, Korea and Vietnam, and are portrayed as guardians of the people in ancient relics found throughout the region and in Feng shui. The concept of ‘Four Gods’ emerged in Tosa’s digital artwork at the Yeosu Marine Expo (Korea) in 2012 and was later honoured by the Expo committee. This is the first time the artist will introduce a new series of works in a gallery space.

Whitestone Gallery Hong Kong will transform itself into a multimedia environment for this exhibition, with high-tech equipment generously provided by TELMIC Corp. and USHIO Lighting Inc., allowing Tosa’s work to be experienced in the most dynamic manner possible.

NAOKO TOSA: Invisible Beauty, will be on view from 4 August to 2 September 2018. As a part of the opening programme, and to deepen the understanding of Tosa’s creativity, Whitestone Gallery will host a Curator Talk with the artist at 4:00pm on 4 August. Please join us for this special occasion.

  •  Curator + Artist Talk by Junji Ito and Naoko Tosa: 4:00pm, 4 August 2018
  •  Opening reception: 5:00 – 7:00pm, 4 August 2018

白石畫廊香港欣然呈獻日本藝術家土佐尚子個展。作為媒體藝術先驅,土佐結合尖端科技和日本傳統文化創作出享譽 國際的作品。本展覽將展出一系列媒體作品,包括「花道之聲」、「創世紀」、「太空花」、以及全新系列「四神」, 並同時展出藝術家的攝影作品。本次展覽由伊東順二策展,透過結合藝術與科學捕捉生活中的無形美。

土佐於1985年創作的錄像作品《表達》,以光感測器讀取電視螢光幕的亮度再轉化成聲音。作品為錄像作品開闢了新 領域,其後被紐約現代藝術博物館收藏;土佐最著名的系列「花道之聲」亦是從此作品延伸出來。藝術家以聲音的振 動穿透彩色液體如油漆和油彩,並以高速相機捕捉它迷人的動態。其原生、優雅的動態是由根據文化歷史的色彩象徵 而挑選的顏色和質感組成。「花道之聲」於2014年在新加坡藝術科學博物館的外牆投影,並於2017年與日本社會畫廊 及時代廣場合作,在紐約時代廣場超過60個廣告牌上展出。

在保持日本美學的同時,土佐以「創世紀」系列探索生命的起源。藝術家捕捉日本墨水和乾冰泡沫在高粘度液體中所 產生的互動,創造起伏不定卻迷人的瞬間。藝術家稱這複雜而且無法掌握的現象為「藝術的超自然形式」,因而只有 每秒拍攝2000格的高速相機能夠捕捉。

土佐以「太空花」系列向琳派致敬。琳派於17世紀在京都創立,是歷史悠久的日本藝術流派。其特徵包括戲劇性的構 圖、奢華地使用的黃金和珍珠等珍貴材料、以及其金箔背景。儘管「太空花」系列主題來自日本花魁(傳統藝妓)或 太空叢林,作品亦參考並結合了琳派的繪畫方式。而此系列作品《雷神》和《風神》是土佐向俵屋宗達著名作品《風 神和雷神》的致敬。

土佐最新系列作品「四神」以聲音來振動日本漆器,作品靈感來源於中國神獸包括青龍、朱雀、玄武、白虎 。四隻神 獸各代表一個方向、季節及生命的元素:金、木、水、火。這四隻神獸在中國、日本、韓國和越南均具重要文化意義 ,並被視為古代人民和風水的守護者。土佐的「四神」概念作品首次於2012年韓國麗水海洋博覽會中展出,其後被世 博委員會頒授榮譽。本次展覽將會是藝術家首次在畫廊空間展示出一系列全新作品。

白石畫廊香港得到TELMIC Corp.和USHIO Lighting Inc.慷慨提供的高科技設備,畫廊將搖身一變成為多媒體空間,讓土 佐的作品能以最動態的方式在畫廊空間展示。

土佐尚子:福,將於2018年8月4日至9月2日展出。為了加深觀眾對土佐創作概念的認識,白石畫廊香港將於8月4日下 午4時舉辦策展人與藝術家對談。我們誠意邀請您參與。

策展人與藝術家對談 伊東順二與土佐尚子:2018年8月4日下午4時 開幕酒會:2018年8月4日下午5時至7時


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