Between : Kota Hirakawa at un petit GARAGE

【Japanese version is below; 日本語は下にあります。】

Effective use of vacant spaces is an integral part in the city development, and the situation, especially in Tokyo, is relevant as far as I’m concerned. Formerly a parking spot, un petit GARAGE in Ginza has made efficient use of its space for almost 2 years, exhibiting work of Japanese young and emerging artists curated by YY ARTS that manages several art projects with a strong focus on the contemporary art scene in Japan and its history.

And now painter Kota Hirakawa’s ongoing exhibition entitled Between brings viewers awareness of art history in Japan and the influences of war in an ironic way, offering a seemingly endless gradation of blacks playing with shadow and light, particularly in a series of ‘Ambiguous painting’. The constancy of his approach and technique is equally elegant and provocative – thus Hirakawa and I had a conversation one afternoon.

Sketching events held during my elementary school days and visiting Okinawa numerous times with my particular interest in cenotaphs for the nation’s war dead in the days when I was in college were influential in my continuing exploration of painting as a means of art making“, I asked the artist to tell us about this project more. “And I have wanted to create story between the people in the past and nowadays who meet on canvas. Going on a journey with a dark and black screen, each of frames in the series explores how my idea of ‘people’ and history being separated are built and where our memories are inherited from to help our current social system support, encouraging the development of abstract painting in the Japanese art scene.” said Hirakawa.

DSC_0070Installation view at exhibition “Between” 


空間の有効利用。少なくとも — 特にこの街では — 状況は様々ではあろう。そんな中、時代の風を司る美術作品がその空間を埋めるというのは非常に理に適っていて、人の心情に直接突き刺さる(刺さってほしい。)現象なのではないかとわたしは思う。

銀座7丁目のun petit GARAGEは以前まさに車一台分の駐車場だった場所だ。そこで鑑賞者は何を期待するのか。そして、この空間の意図することとは?


ここでの現行の展示、平川恒太氏個展「Between」は、日本の歴史や美術史を、多角的な視点と平川氏の緻密な画法から切り開く。とくに日本の抽象画の歴史に皮肉をこめたシリーズ、Ambiguous paintingのスタイルは強さと繊細さを持ち合わせながら、鑑賞者へ新しい気づきをもたらすのだ。黒い画面。黒の四角形。黒の線。それらは、一回見たら忘れることができないように頭の片隅に刷り込まれる。さて、この平川氏がこのスタイルを追求するようになったわけとは?わたしは、思わず質問してみた。





Ambiguous painting-Black Square-Ambiguous painting “Black Square”, 2016, Acrylic and oil on canvas, image courtesy of HIRAKAWA STUDIO

Where Do We Come From Where Are We Going-“Where Do We Come From? Where Are We Going?”, 2014, Acrylic and oil on canvas, image courtesy of HIRAKAWA STUDIO

:: Kota Hirakawa’s exhibition “Between” is on view at un petit GARAGE, located at 7-17-1 Ginza (on the ground floor of Ginza-Musashino building), Chuo-ku in Tokyo until Saturday the 21st of May, 2016.

:: 平川恒太氏個展「Between」 は、un petit GARAGEにて5月21日(土)までの会期で開催中。スペース情報はこちらを、アーティスト情報はこちらをご覧ください。

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