Maiko Kobayashi: Be Here, For Sure October 7 – October 28, 2023 GR gallery 255 Bowery (between Houston & Stanton) New York, NY 10002
GR gallery is pleased to announce the first solo exhibition of Japanese artist Maiko Kobayashi with the gallery and in the U.S. Titled “Be Here, For Sure”, this show will present a new series that strongly highlights the artist’s choice of her characters and their personalities -for the first time, clearly referred and inspired by real people that crossed the artist’s path- and on the connections occurring between them and the empathy generated in their creator.
This exhibition will reveal to the public fifteen artworks on canvas in various sizes and a live painting. This new body of work is pushing further beyond the edge Kobayashi’s signature technique, consisting in multiple semi-transparent layering of different paint and media, where one coat partially reveals the one under, symbolizing the complexity of her acclaimed creatures.
‘The more I get to know things in the world, the more often I feel helpless. But, when I discover that human beings have that essential vitality that will never be lost under any circumstances, my heart fills with courage and hope. The ‘friction’ caused by this contradictory sensation is my motivation to draw’.
This is the preface that ignites the creation of Kobayashi whimsical and cryptic characters. Cute and adorable -a sort of bunny/puppy hybrid- at a first glance; the omnipresent clue of melancholy and the deep expression in its eyes immediately reveal the unprecedented sophistication of these creatures, building a complex and idiosyncratic psychological discrepancy. As Kobayashi explains in a recent interview: ‘The impressions of my creatures are not just a reflection of emotions, it’s a duplication of layers upon layers of sentiments.
You might not be able to absorb all the senses I’ve delivered at first glance, and the comprehension could differ from each person. It has layers, for instance, emptiness first, then you feel the peacefulness seething through after a long stare. Sometimes my creatures are all recorded in a sobbing impression, but it could also be a state when the sadness has just passed’. All these levels of perception are now acquiring a new and revitalized context focusing on actual complexions, affiliation and proximity.
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