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「纏」MATOI
 
 ギリシャ・ローマの石膏像(レプリカ)に日本の浮世絵をプロジェクターで投影してその像を描いています。
西洋と東洋、立体と平面、白黒とカラーを対比させ、技法的にはアクリル絵の具と日本画の絵の具の両方を使用しています。
しかし西洋と東洋の対比だけなら、すでに国内外の優れた学者たちによって研究が尽くされています。
むしろ「纏」MATOIシリーズのテーマは「解剖台の上でのミシンと蝙蝠傘の出会い」に集約されるように、シュルレアリスム的アプローチから生まれる新しい美を模索しています。

 彫刻も浮世絵も誰もが知っている名作・名画ですが、既存の美術作品の一見ミスマッチで意外な組み合わせから、新たなイメージを創造しています。
「本物」の対極にあるのが複製、偽物、模倣ですが、「纏」MATOIシリーズは一点至上主義の固定概念を打ち破り、「本物」の価値観に疑問を呈しています。異質なもの同士を組み合わせて、絵に落とし込むことで新たな一点物に昇華する不思議を楽しんでください。

 彫刻シリーズは浮世絵を刺青のように纏っています。
しかし最近の骨格標本を使った作品はそもそも浮世絵の色彩を纏う肉がありません。
その代わり、北斎の浮世絵の滝を静脈に、若冲の薔薇の絵を血肉に見立てています。
西洋絵画には「ヴァニタス」と呼ばれる、人生の儚さや虚しさを主題とした静物画のジャンルがあります。
絵の中に腐った果物や枯れた花、頭蓋骨を潜ませることで、確実に訪れる老いや死を悲観的かつ自明のものとして描きます。
しかし「纏」MATOIシリーズに描かれた骸骨は死の影すら纏っていない、清潔で明るい現代のヴァニタスとも受け取れます。




MATOI

With the MATOI painting series, first I project the image of an ukiyo-e (“floating-world painting”) onto a replica of a Greek or Roman sculpture. Then I paint a combined image onto Japanese washi paper.

The sculpture wears an ukiyo-e projection as if it were a tattoo, thereby fitting the title MATOI (which is derived from the verb 纏う “matou, meaning “to wear” or “to put in the form of”).

The series contrasts Europe and Asia, monochrome and color, and accentuates the differences between the two-dimensional images of woodblock prints and the three-dimensional ancient sculptures with smooth alabaster skin. I use both Western acrylic paints and Japanese pigments, such as rock paints, shell lime and sumi ink. Western and East-Asian art from comparative and contrastive points of view has already been thoroughly researched by notable scholars. Rather, this Matoi series takes on the juxtaposing we find in surrealism, which is best expressed by the well-known phrase, “Beautiful as the chance meeting of a sewing-machine and an umbrella on a dissecting-table.”

Both classical sculptures and traditional ukiyo-e paintings are considered “masterpieces,” and by putting together two seemingly mismatched, contradictory art forms from two different cultures, it brings about a new creation.

We can consider the “authentic” as residing at the opposite end of fakery, replicas, copies, reproductions and imitations, but this MATOI series breaks the stereotype of worshipping only “real” artworks by questioning the notion of an authentic original. When two extremely disparate realities are brought together in new, one-of-a-kind artworks, viewers may be left wondering what the line is between a genuine and a fake.

My recent works—as part of the Matoi series—use a human, anatomical skeleton as a motif, which are even whiter than sculptures. Unlike sculptures, the skeleton has no flesh to wear a colorful ukiyo-e painting as a tattoo. Instead, I use a waterfall print by Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849) that looks like blue veins, and a Japanese painting by Itō Jakuchū (1716-1800), which depicts red roses as flesh and blood. There is a form of European still-life painting called “vanitas,” which portrays the impermanence of life and the vanity of human desires. Vanitas paintings often include skulls, rotten fruit, and decaying flowers, all symbolizing the unavoidable change into old age towards certain death. The skeletons painted in the Matoi series, however, can be interpreted as modern-day vanitas pictures with a clean and bright atmosphere wears not even a shadow of death.

                                    Translation by Eiko Aoki