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portrait series《 F and K 》
Acrylic on cotton, panel
H32×W20×D5 cm, Two panels in combination
portrait series「F and K」
H32 x W40(各20)×D5 cm、2点組
Photo by OMOTE Nobutada
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Photo by OMOTE Nobutada
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Photo by OMOTE Nobutada
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Photo by OMOTE Nobutada
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Photo by OMOTE Nobutada

Imura Art Gallery is pleased to present portraits, a solo exhibition by Kyoto-based artist Toru Kamiya. The last time his works were shown here was a solo exhibition in 2014, nine years ago.

Kamiya's representative works are paintings characterized by color gradations in acrylic paint, using panels designed by the artist himself as supports. In his creative process, Kamiya first prepares the colors that serve as the elements of his color compositions by mixing acrylic paints. Each color of paint is applied to the surface, and then the paint is spread over the canvas using a tool of his own devising that connects brushes in a row. After the paint dries, he repeats the same process several times, continuing to add layers of paint until he is satisfied that the work is complete.

This exhibition mainly displays works from Kamiya’s portrait series. These are portraits of the people who have become part of Kamiya’s circle since he moved to Kyoto. They depict people who belong to communities that he interacts with every day, such as his family and his workplace. Although the works in this series are nominally “portraits,” they lack specific motifs, and as with his usual gradation works, they are expressed as paintings of color composition. Before painting a portrait, the artist may ask the subject about their birthday or about something else related to numbers. Kamiya is a synesthetic person who sees colors in numbers, and he takes his subjects’ colors from these numbers. When the artist is creating the colors for his usual gradation works, he asks himself whether the colors will work as a painting, and he thinks about whether he wants to see a painting with those colors and whether that combination of colors goes together well. However, Kamiya says that in creating these portraits, he doesn't merely look for colors that harmonize well, but in order to summon up the colors of his subjects, he tries to find how he sees them. This series is characterized by the fact that the paintings are not necessarily created from only an aesthetic point of view.

Until about two years ago, the artist was aiming to create effects of depth, foreground, or distortion within the pictorial space. However, he explains that he came to think that he didn't want to create a sense of depth in his paintings and that he didn't want to use colors that stand out strongly; instead he wanted to make it appear like the colors just stay on the surface of the painting. He likens it to the colors of the inside of the eyelids (the colors seen when one closes their eyes). He says that he has the impression that it is neither a distant motif nor an expression that comes from within, but rather the phenomenon that is nearest, accompanied by a kind of corporeality. Kamiya also says that he is experiencing changes within himself with respect to colors, and he now feels that he wants to use bright colors. We hope that you will observe these changes in his work.

For an artist who ordinarily has no particular image in mind for the colors he uses in his work, it is a major change and a challenge to create works based on an image. We hope that you will enjoy viewing this portrait series, which is being exhibited for the first time here in Kyoto, where Toru Kamiya is based.



 本展では、肖像画シリーズ(portrait series)作品をメインに紹介します。神谷が京都に移り住んでから関わるようになった周囲の人々の肖像画で、家族や職場をはじめとした日常的に関わるそれぞれのコミュニティに属する人々が描かれます。肖像画と言っても神谷の肖像画は、具体的なモチーフを持たず、通常のグラデーション作品の形式と同様に、色面構成による絵画で表現しています。肖像画を描くにあたり、作家は対象者に誕生日や何か数字と結びつくような事をインタビューする事があります。神谷は数字に色が付いて見える共感覚者で、数字をもとに対象者の人物カラーを引用しています。通常のグラデーション作品制作で色を作る際は、「絵画として成立するかどうか」を考慮し「こんな色の絵が見たい」「この組み合わせはうまくいくだろうか」などと考えます。しかし、肖像画では、良い響き合いをする組み合わせの色だけでなく、対象となる人物のカラーも引用するため、自身でもどの様な見え方になるかを試しながら、期待して制作しているといいます。必ずしも美的な観点からだけでない絵が出来上がる事がこのシリーズの特徴です。




 普段の制作で使用する色にイメージは特に無いとする作家の、イメージをもとに制作された作品たちは、作家の制作にとって大きな変化で挑戦となっています。初公開となる肖像画シリーズ(portrait series)作品を、作家の活動拠点である京都でぜひご覧ください。

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Toru Kamiya "portraits"

2023/6/23 (Fri.) - 7/15 (Sat.)*Closed on Mondays, Sundays and National Holidays

More press release pdf: View PDF


2023/6/23 (Fri.) - 7/15 (Sat.)*Closed on Mondays, Sundays and National Holidays

プレスリリースPDFはこちら: PressRelease_ToruKamiya2023