sato, The”U"zing, TOM●KA
Ouchi Gallery | 170 Tillary Street
Curated by Ouchi Gallery
Tittle:LOVE & PEACE & HAPPY
sato was born in a town in Hokkaido where there is a rich natural environment. Parents and relatives had to say that he had excellent aesthetic sense from childhood.
He learned design at Tohoku Institute of Technology and was greatly influenced by Japanese illustrators in the 80 's. He hoped to further his studies, and after graduating from university, he went on to Chiba University graduate school. He continued studying design until he had earned a Master's degree and then a Doctorate in the field of Engineering. What he learned from Saiji Kanamori and Ryoichi Shigeta during that time has helped a lot since he has become an artist. He learned the viewpoint of representational painting from Saiji Kanamori and the viewpoint of abstract art from Ryoichi Shigeta. sato currently is expanding the width of his expression in multiple directions without discriminating between concrete art and abstract art, but it's possible to trace the foundation of his artistic expression back to his school days.
He became a freelance designer after graduate school, but one year later he was asked to take a job as an engineer. He soon left to start his own independent office.He moved to Sapporo, Hokkaido in 2006. The Great East Japan earthquake happened in 2011. Because he had been enrolled in universities in the Tohoku and Kanto area, he couldn't think of it as a somebody else's problem, and felt deep anxiety and thought he had to do something. But there was nothing that he could do, so he began to draw his own hand as a form of prayer. At this time, sato resolved to begin activity as an artist. At this time, sato's artistic activity became synonymous with prayer.
It's because he thought he’d like to be anonymous that he decided to introduce himself as sato when he began his activity as an artist. Sato's work seems to have strong originality, but he thinks that there are no techniques or methods which haven't been performed by present-day artists any more. Therefore sato doesn't put much weight on originality. Instead, he hopes to be a spokesman for someone else through his work. It is for that reason that the artist hates to be in the spotlight. It's also why the letter S is lowercase.This is the same reason why sato professes to be a modern artist, but doesn't profess to be an avant-garde artist.
When he began his activity as an artist, there were requests for pictures from friends all over Japan, and he created one after another.For three years from 2012 to 2014 he produced a calendar for a beauty salon every month. Based on his experience studying design, he worked to develop a fashionable style of art.
In 2012 and 2013, he participated in group exhibitions, focusing on copper engraving and croquis, respectively. In 2014, he finally held a solo exhibition. The 2014 Sapporo International Art Festival (guest director: Ryuichi Sakamoto) was held during the same period, and sato's exhibition was approved as related event.
All works of sato are exhibited for foreign countries on facebook. He participates in an art group of more than 90 and has steady fans all over the world. sato's abstract painting in particular was appreciated first overseas. Each day, after doing basic exercises in croquis and so on, sato creates abstract art, working with his right brain. He continues to create freely, without being tied up to a particular medium or style.
sato has started activities overseas in order to let his work be more widely known. He is aiming to make 2015 the first year for his international activity, and to do more international releases in the future. As he continues his activity, sato regards Gerhard Richter as the ideal artist. He paints tremendously skillful representational paintings, and he is also able to create abstract and three-dimensional art - all of these fit the direction in which sato is moving.
OPENING RECEPTION 3/21
7:00 PM - 10:00 PM
WEDNESDAY 3/22, - SUNDAY 3/26, 12:00 PM - 6:00PM
(By appointment only on Wednesdays)
The"U"zing (Takeshi Nakata) was born in 1969 in Tokyo, Japan.
Despite having the limitation of physical mobility from a young age due to a congenial disease called myelopathic muscular atrophy, he started painting in his youth.
When he could still move his hands, he painted with watercolors and oils. As he gradually lost the ability to use his hands, he became more eager to seek deeper, further-reaching ways of expressions and began using computers when they became widely available, creating graphics by a stick held in his mouth.
He also produces music and three dimensional works by directing his collaborations. In 2002, he mounted a camera on to his custom made electric wheelchair, which he controls with the stick held in his mouth, and began publishing photographic works.
Currently, he operates the wheelchair and concentrates on photography while creating three dimensional works, paintings, musical compositions, lyrics, scenarios, stories, and webpage designs.
At first glance, his work may appear to lack a sense of unity. However, when taking a close look, all his creations have the intermingled elements and themes of “life”, “death”, “light”, “shadow”, “happiness”, “sadness”, “eros”, and “hope”. In other words, it is the “life/existence” and the “universe”, which represents The”U”zing himself.
A viewer of his work once said, “Your picture is a print from the blink of your eye. It is a world that only you can see.”
His artist name, The”U”zing, is written with three english words, and in Japanese, it is written with three kanjis, which signify “time”, “play”, and “god”. It is pronounced as “jiyuujin”, which has the same pronunciation as the word that means “free person”.
He may not have “freedom” in a physical sense, but his personality and creations are “free”, which makes him “jiyuujin” aka The”U”zing.
He states: “I am what you call physically handicapped. So what? Probably nothing. It is simply the truth. What I want to create in the future is something I, myself do not know and something I look forward to. For me, creating is comparable to breathing, and they are much the same. It is not a job or a hobby, nor is it something that can be categorized as a like or dislike. Nobody breathes reluctantly because they feel obligated, and no one breathes because they find it extremely fun and enjoyable. It is not something you feel you want to quit, and is it something impossible to quit on your own will. For me, creating and being an artist is precisely the same as that. Of course, if it’s painful and something you hate, you would not continue such a thing, therefore, one can assume that you “like” it. However, it is not something that appears in your conscience and is slightly feels different from a like or dislike. For me, being an artist is life itself.”
2016 Group Exhibition "LIFE" at NOHO M5 Gallery NY
2016 Group Exhibition "JCAT SHOWCASE 20" at Ouchi Gallery NY
2015 Photographer’s Forum magazine Best of Photography 2015 Finalist
2015 Personal Exhibition at Ouchi Gallery NY
2013 8Th_100_Artist_Exhibition at Ouchi Gallery NY
2012 Group Exhibition at Independants “1st Oz Exhibition” of Omega Algea
2011 Group Exhibition “Yugure Iro ● 3 (Dusk Color 3)” at Gallery Avi
2011 Group Exhibition “Deka Photo ● 3 (Large Photo 3) “at Gallery Avi
2009 Group Exhibition “ART & PHOTO BOOK EXHIBITION 2009″ at Shinjuku Ophthalmologist
2004 (Juried) Next One’s Competition, Invited Artist
2001 Iwaki CG Art Festival, Still category, 2nd Prize
1994 Dream Draw Gallery, 1st Prize
1991 KFS Illustration Festival, Coppertone award
TUESDAY3/21 7:00 PM - 10:00 PM
THURSDAY, 3/16- SUNDAY3/31, 12:00 PM - 6:00 PM
(Closed on Wednesday)
TOMOKA is a Japanese otaku (subculture nerd) artist from Tokyo inspired by Japanese
kawaii (cute) pop subculture. Her HAPPY ART aims to empower the genre with clever
self-reflexivity. TOMOKA works with digital-illustration prints on canvas. This platform
allows her to play and explore with the boundaries that divide lowbrow subculture from
highbrow art, elevating aspects of Japanese popular culture. She believes that digital-
illustration prints are the new now. TOMOKA’s art is universal. Whether or not you have
a background in art, everyone melts helplessly in the face of soft power.
But most importantly, TOMOKA’s WORLD hopes to shower you with happiness and
bubbling joy, poking your heart with a happy moment.
TUESDAY3/21 7:00 PM - 10:00 PM
THURSDAY, 3/21- SUNDAY3/26, 12:00 PM - 6:00 PM
(Closed on Wednesday)