A couple of weeks ago I snapped this lovely little robot statue in the window of a high class art gallery in Tokyo’s Ginza district. It was late at night and closed, but I think I need to get there again during opening hours to find out more about the artist!
There is a fine line between art and crafts but who cares about that when there is art like this? A huge elephant made up of thousands of cwelded metal plates. Titled fading -increasing- it is the graduation piece by young artist Koro Ihara (井原宏蕗) of Tama Art University. Unusually for Japanese artists he seems quite adept at self promotion and has an excellent web site here. Recommended!
He is currently exhibiting some work at BankArt Life III, an annual exhibition at one of Yokohama’s most beautiful buildings that you can’t have missed if you walk around a lot in that city (in my opinion, the most exciting city in Asia at the moment). The building itself is an old bank (旧横浜銀行本店) and I sure wish I had some nice photos to show you but I always seems to pass by at night or in the early morning when my mind is less than focused on focusing my camera lens.
Here’s another great find at the Winter Tokyo Wonder Festa a couple of weeks ago. This fantastic sculpted (well, more like welded) mecha (although the creator calls it a power suit) drew a lot of attention. Imagine if this guy could be given a couple of aces of abandoned industrial wasteland or woodlot somewhere? In case you want to exhibit this piece of, well, junk, you can contact the creator. I guess the postage will be pretty hight though!
This wonderful series of metal sculptures by Japanese artist Shojiro Yamauchi (内山翔二郎) really caught me when I saw it at the National Art Center exhibition in March this year. It is called ある惑星住人 which I loosely translate as “Inhabitants Of A Certain Planet”, but since there are no definitive articles or plural forms for Japanese nouns it gets tricky to translate short sentences taken out of any context. Ants, a cicada and a spider with what seems to be a mini gun aimed at the cicada makes up this mini installation. The works are pretty large though. The cicada is easily a couple of meters across! I just love the details and the quality of this. Japan seems to have a lot of good metal artists lately!
Mr Yamauchi recently graduated from the Nihon University College of Art (日本大学藝術学部) and you can read a short bio and see more photos of the ants on his site here. He was born in Kanagawa prefecture and just finished an exhibition at a gallery in Yokohama, of where there are some nice photos at Maruoka’s blog here.