Shohei Fujita was born in 1968 in Wakayama Prefecture. After he graduated from the Ceramics course of the Department of Crafts of Kyoto City University of Arts in 1995, he moved to the UK. He learned glass art at Edinburgh College of Arts, where he completed his studies in 1997. He also works in the unit “Suna Fujita” with ceramic artist Chisato Yamano. He has held numerous solo exhibitions in Japan including in Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, and Mie.
Nana Funo’s paintings are richly filled with motifs of decorative patterns, animals and plants, figures, landscapes and written characters. They are composed with various techniques – graceful drawings of acrylic, repetitive overlaying of gesso or dye, patterns that come into appearance from masking – and the visual effect that embraces richness in layers arouse a curiosity to explore what is illustrated deep inside the paintings. Textures similar to porcelain, textile or sometimes relief can be observed in the works. The technique and unique textures she brings about by continuously moving her hands across the picture plane start to function as an independent language, and it is as if the artist gazes in concentration at the state of the world, while keeping it at a certain distance from herself and her works.
Nana Funo was born in 1983 in Shizuoka, Japan. In 2008, she received an M.F.A. in Painting from Kyoto City University of Arts. She currently lives and works in Kyoto. Her solo exhibitions at Tomio Koyama Gallery include “The Humidity of Underground and the Feel of Paper” (Tokyo, 2014), “The Fish Glitters as Its Scales Tremble “(Singapore, 2014), “Vessel That Never Leaks” (Tokyo, 2012) and “Who Knows the Stories” (Kyoto, 2009). Her selected group exhibitions include “The Way of Painting” (Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery, Tokyo, 2014) and “VOCA 2009 – The Vision of Contemporary Art” (The Ueno Royal Museum, Tokyo, 2009). Her work is included in MONTBLANC and GBU Japan, Takahashi Collection, Takamatsu City Museum of Art and the JAPIGOZZI Collection.
Satoshi Hirose was born in 1963 in Tokyo. He graduated from Tama Art University in 1989 and two years later he received an Italian government scholarship and moved to Italy. In 1996-97, he stayed in Italy under POLA Art Foundation Grants Program. He then completed a degree at Milan’s Brera Academy of Fine Arts in 1997, and studied in New York under Japanese Government Overseas Study Program for Artists provided by the Agency for Cultural Affairs in 2008-09. He is currently based in Milan and Tokyo.
His major solo exhibitions include “Lemon Project 03” (The Ginza Art Space, Tokyo, 1997), “Paradiso- Criterium 34” (Contemporary Art Center, Art Tower Mito, Ibaraki, Japan, 1998), “2001” (Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Hiroshima, 2000), and in more recent years “Heteronym” (Galleria Umberto Di Marino, Napoli, 2015), and “Vis à Vis Flâneur – SATOSHI HIROSE” (Fondazione Molise Cultura, Campobasso, Italy, 2016).
He has presented work in numerous group exhibitions including “Neo Tokyo” (Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, 2001), and “Beppu Contemporary Art Festival 2012: Mixed Bathing World” (Beppu City, Oita, Japan, 2012), as well as a commission “Your Sky, My Sky: sky project for Arts Maebashi” Arts Maebashi, Gunma, Japan (2013). He has held five solo exhibitions at Tomio Koyama Gallery in 2000, 2005, 2008, 2009, ad 2013. Hirose also has worked on commissions in collaboration with companies.This July, he is creating an artwork in the new building of PeptiDream, a pharmaceutical company that pursues drug development.
Yuka Kashihara uses oil paint applied in a thinly diffuse manner similar to that of Japanese nihonga painting, and by applying it in numerous layers she is able to create a unique depth of color. Within the world of her artworks, scenes from both reality and the spaces of the internal imagination are gently interwoven. Against this backdrop, having left Japan and moved to Germany where she continued developing her practice, Kashihara acquired an interest in the ‘distance’ between the internal and the external. This included the physical distance between Japan and Germany; and further, the distance herself as a Japanese person and herself while in Germany. This becomes expressed symbolically as an introspective speculation in the forms of the motifs of caves, holes, mountains and lakes which she repeatedly takes up within her work, and through this process of sublimation it is as though the original energies which lie dormant within the great Earth have become awakened.
Yuka Kashihara was born in 1980 in Hiroshima Prefecture. In 2006 she graduated from the Japanese Painting Department of Musashino Art University. In the same year she moved to Germany, and in 2013 she acquired a Diploma from the Academy of Visual Arts in Leipzig. In 2015, she was named a Meisterschüler (Masters graduate) of the same academy, studying under Professor Annette Schröter. In 2008 she exhibited at the Bauhuas Dessau Foundation in Shakkei (“borrowed scenery”), a solo show curated by research scholar Torsten Blume of the same Foundation, and in 2012 she exhibited in VOCA, Tokyo, where she received both the Honourable Mention Award and the Ohara Museum of Art Award.
1980 Born in Hiroshima, Japan
2006 B.F.A in Japanese Painting, Musashino Art University, Tokyo
2012 Stayed in Germany under POLA Art Foundation Grants Program
2013 Completed Diploma in Academy of Visual Arts Leipzig, Germany
A part-time lecturer of Musashino Art University, Department of Japanese Painting, Tokyo (-2017)
2015 Completed Meisterschüler in Academy of Visual Arts Leipzig, Germany (under Prof. Annette Schroeter)
Lives and works in Germany
Naoki Koide was born in Aichi prefecture in 1968. He graduated from Tokyo Zokei University in 1992. He currently lives and works in Chiba. Since the group exhibition “Magic Room” (curated by Satoshi Okada) in 2003, the solo exhibitions “A Couple in the Bathroom” (2004), “Marriage” (2006), and “In These Days” (2008), “Maternity Leave” (2011), this marks the artist’s fifth solo exhibition with Tomio Koyama Gallery. His other major exhibitions include “Cafe in Mito” (2004, Art Tower Mito, Tochigi), “Magical Art Life” (2006, Tokyo Wonder Site, Shibuya), “Fiction@Love” (2006, MOCA Shanghai), “neoneo Part1[BOY]” (2009, Takahashi Collection Hibiya, Tokyo), “Echigo-Tumari Art Trienial” (2009, Nigata) and “Paul Clay” (2011, Salon 94 Bowery, New York).
1976 Born in Shizuoka, Japan
1999 B.F.A., Tama Art University, Tokyo
2004 Scouted by Tomio Koyama at GEISAI #6
In Tomoko Nagai’s works, various motifs including animals such as bears, cats, and horses; young girls and imaginary figures; and trees and mushrooms are scattered against backgrounds of forest or rooms which look precisely as if they were theater sets. In all of her works there is a characteristic sense of fulfilment, as if expressing a condensed form of our world. Nagai does not draw before painting, and she uses different media depending on the subject: oil, acrylic, watercolor, color pencil, and pastel, as well as sculptures and installations. This results in various matiere and levels of intensity that seem to have become elements and rhythms, together constituting one music. Nagai’s works do not carry any specific narratives. By feeling this music, we somehow enter unawares into her world of stories.
Tomoko Nagai was born in Aichi Prefecture in 1982. She graduated from Aichi Prefectural University of Fine Arts and Music in 2006, majoring in Oil Painting. She currently lives and works in Tokyo. She has held five
solo exhibitions with Tomio Koyama Gallery, and a solo exhibition at Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery. She has also participated in “VOCA 2010” at The Ueno Royal Museum, Tokyo, as well as international exhibitions such as “Future Pass – From Asia to the World” Collateral Event of the 54th International Art Exhibition la Biennale di Venezia (Palazzo Mangilli-Valmarana, Venice, 2011), and other group exhibitions in Seoul, Grenoble, and Berlin. She also worked with a project in which she painted the walls of the swimming pool in a nursery school called Toyama nursery school (designed by Takahashi Ippei Office) located in Shichigahama town, Miyagi, one of the stricken areas caused by the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. The nursery building completed in 2013 was fully funded and supported by Singapore Red Cross. Her works have been included in public collections including The Takahashi Collection (Japan), The Olbricht Collection (Germany), The Zabludowicz Collection (UK) and The JAPIGOZZI Collection (US/ Switzerland).
Yuko Okazaki was born in 1976 in Tokyo. After working at the public relations department at Issey Miyake she started studying under Eiichi Morita in Kasama, Ibaraki, for five years before she opened her own studio. She currently lives and works in Yokosuka, surrounded by rich natural landscapes of sea and mountains.
Ellie Omiya was born in Osaka in 1975, and graduated from the University of Tokyo, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences. She began to pursue an independent career after working at an advertising agency, engaging in projects across various genres as an accomplished author, stage play director, screenwriter and director for television programs and films, and also as a radio personality. From 2012 she started holding interactive solo exhibitions presenting works conveying various images and text, which are completed through viewer’s participation. Omiya has gained high acclaim for her solo exhibitions including “To Convey Emotions” (toured PARCO MUSEUM and other venues, 2012-13), “To Be Alive” (PARCO MUSEUM, 2013), and “Message from the Starry Sky” (toured MITSUBISHI ESTATE ATRIUM and other venues, 2013-2014).
Omiya’s journey as an artist began in 2012, when she was asked to produce a live drawing at the Gallery of Horyuji Treasures inside the Tokyo National Museum to celebrate Mr. Soichiro Fukutake’s receipt of the Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award. This first ever drawing she produced, “Celebration Melody: Naoshima” (currently in the private collection of Mr. Fukutake), while unexpectedly marking the beginning of her painterly practice, had received much attention and acclaim as her debut work.
Ever since, Omiya has held numerous solo exhibitions such as “emotional journey” (Daikanyama Hillside Terrace, Tokyo) and “painting dreams” (Shibuya Hikarie 8/ CUBE, Tokyo) in 2015, followed by her first museum solo exhibition in 2016, “Sincerely Yours, Ellie Omiya”(Towada Art Center, Aomori), in which she also presented works outside the museum in the city’s local shopping arcade. In 2017, she held the solo exhibition “This is forest speaking” (Kanaz Forest of Creation, Fukui), and in 2018 participated in “Rokko Meets Art 2018” where she created and presented “Mansion of a Widow.” The work was featured in her 2019 solo exhibition “Beautiful Days” (Daikanyama Hillside Terrace / Hillside Forum, Tokyo) along with her new large-scale installation “One Day’s Picnic.” She continues to rapidly develop and progress in her career as an artist, publishing her new catalogue of illustrations and texts, “Whale of Rainbow” from Bijutsu Shuppan-sha in February 2019, also in March holding “A Wonderful Forest” (TICOLAT TAMURA, Hong Kong) which marks her first solo exhibition at an overseas gallery.
A closet packed full of colorful dresses, an array of high-heeled shoes on shelves, vividly colored flowers:Midori Sato shows us things that every woman yearns to see. Yet if we turn our attention to the details of her work, bold brushstrokes and an intentionally uneven paint coating tinge her subject matter with the contours of abstraction. This abstraction demonstrates the force of the power that draws the viewer into the picture plane.
Midori Sato was born in 1984 in Aichi Prefecture. She graduated from Oil Painting Course, School of Art, Nagoya University of Arts in 2008, and studied at Ecole nationale des beaux arts de Dijion, France as an exchange student in 2008. She received M.F.A from Graduate School of Tokyo Zokei University in 2010. Her major solo exhibitions include TWS-Emerging 140 ”Blissful moments” (Tokyo Wonder Site Hongo, Tokyo, 2010), TWS-Emerging Plus”Point Marie” (Tokyo Wonder Site Art Café kurage, 2011) , “Project N 48” (Tokyo Opera City Arty Gallery, Tokyo,2012) and “My Precious Room”(Tomio Koyama Gallery, Kyoto, 2012). She live painted at Shinjuku Isetan, on the second floor where has just remodeled in 2013. She exhibited at Art Award Tokyo Matunouchi 2008 and 2010, and received the Tomio Koyama Prize in 2010. Her group exhibitions include “Tokyo Wonder Wall 2009” (Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, 2009) , “Tokyo Painting 2” (Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum, Tokyo,2013) and “Embracing for Painting” (Shiseido Gallery, Tokyo, 2015) In 2013, she received the Ohara Museum of Art Prize at “VOCA 2013″(The Ueno Royal Museum).
Keisuke Yamamoto was born in 1979 in Tokyo. After graduating from the department of Sculpture of Tokyo Zokei University in 2001 he stayed at the university as a research student until 2003. He currently lives and works in Kanagawa. This show at Tomio Koyama Gallery is his sixth solo exhibition, and his major group exhibitions include “VOCA 2008” (2008, The Ueno Royal Museum, Tokyo), “Winter Garden: The Exploration of the Micropop Imagination in Contemporary Japanese Art” (2009, Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, traveled to several international museums), “Twist and Shout: Contemporary Art from Japan” (2009, Bangkok Art and Culture Centre), and “Nostalgia and Fantasy: Imagination and Its Origins in Contemporary Art” (2014, National Museum of Art, Osaka). His work is collected by the National Museum of Art, Osaka and international private collections.
Chisato Yamano was born in 1977 in Osaka, Japan. In 2005, She received an M.F.A. from Kyoto City University of Arts and currently lives and works in Kyoto. Apart from solo pieces, she also presents works for everyday general use under the unit name “suna fujita” working with Shohei Fujita.
Takuya Yokoyama was born in Kanagawa Prefecture in 1973, and graduated from Rikkyo University in the Department of Sociology. While a university student, he encountered ceramics through an extra-curricular ceramics club, spent years at Tajimi City Pottery Design and Technical Center after graduated. Today he creates ceramic work in Tajimi city, Gifu prefecture. He has held numerous solo shows to date in Tokyo, Yokohama, Nagoya and Seoul among others.