Artist-in-Residence | 02-30 Nov 2014
Open Studio | 23 Nov 2014, 16:00-19:00
Exhibition | 6-27 Febr 2015 | OPENING: 5 Febr 2015, 19:00
Studio: GAP – Gregersen Art Point, 1093 Budapest, Lónyai u. 31.
FLUX Gallery, 1093 Budapest, Lónyai u. 31.
She is a daughter of the sculptor Toshio Sakurai. She had early encounter with the art from her father.
First explored the concept on which her artistic work is based in 2001 and has been refining and developing it ever since. In a dialogue with painting by the American artist Robert Ryman and under the impression of works by the English “walking artist” Hamish Fulton, Sakurai began to work out series of relief-like, structured, often multi-part coloured objects on wood or canvas. She sees these works as an expression of the emotions triggered by her experience and memories of landscapes and places. Decisive in this context are not only her Japanese roots but, initially, also her experience of the grandeur of natural landscapes in the United States, especially in Utah and New Mexico, which she visited during a journey from Miami to Los Angeles in the summer of 2002.
Since 2011, Sakurai has been increasingly using paper as a ground for the colours, initially Arches paper, and, since 2012, also washi (hand-made Japanese paper) produced in traditional manner. By selecting the finer, more transparent but also more robust paper from Tsuyama, where she has family ties, she also enters into a more intense dialogue with her ancestry, questions regarding her personal identity and her own approach towards the world – a process, that was, not least of all, triggered by the nuclear reactor accidents in Fukushima in March of 2011. The meticulous, careful and respectful way she handles her artistic materials is not only an aesthetic question for Sakurai but also touches upon ethical aspects related to our treatment of natural resources that are in limited supply.
While her earlier works were mainly monochrome, the newer ones are characterised by the use of more colours and sometimes even stark contrasts as well as a broader palette (e.g., the use of the previously non-existent violet). Overlayering, smudging and contrasting the colours serves to create greater visual depth, which allows even works on thin, light-weight washi to be experienced as three-dimensional objects.