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October 29–December 22, 2022
Opening reception: October 29, 2–5pm
The paper structures of Rakuko Naito and Tadaaki Kuwayama are featured in the first of three creative shows that pair up artists whose work is sometimes explicitly and sometimes unintentionally connected via the intimacies of living together. The artwork of Naito and Kuwayama will be on display from October 29 through December 22, 2022, with an opening reception on that day from 2 to 5 p.m.
Smooth-surfaced paintings by Tadaaki Kuwayama have an aura that alters the environment and everyday activities. They look each other in the eyes with calm intensity. If there were motions akin to someone extending their thoughts like a hand, they might be as much things as gestures. Allow yourself to take a closer look if after thirty seconds you believe you have seen all of Kuwayama’s uniformly colored paintings. After three minutes of observation, the hue starts to change, almost like a body shifting its weight. The metal strips between the panels wink at you whenever you step to the left or right while standing immediately in front of the painting. Then, in what appeared to be sustained monochrome at first, lighter patches of color emerge; other panels appear to gradually go darker. As your eyes keep gravitating toward the hub, the cynosure, in the center of the four-panel square, is this just a trick of the mind or the light? There, the gravity is strongest. You sense its attraction and invitation. As a chimney is said to draw, the subtlety of the artwork draws you simultaneously into its color field and into yourself.
The boxed paper collages by Rakuko Naito are located in a different area of the gallery. One resembles a hive’s cross-section or a bed of ooliths. another that resembles flattened white cocktail umbrellas. one resembling a constellation of suckers for infant octopuses. One more appears to be a handcrafted Japanese go board. Yet another that sounds like the stillness of a Phillip Glass song playing in your head. adore, adore, adore However, Naito’s art is blissfully analogy-free. There isn’t any nature, story, figure, line, color, or titles. Her work enacts its own unique, persistent manner of intoxication rather than provoking similarity. a notable combination of creativity and effort. The lushly meticulous iterative work of Naito is an ode to the delight of repetition as much as to the hand and eye. Her mulberry-bark paper fragments, torn by hand and organized with care, have the beautiful rigor of the Fibonacci number sequence. Naito’s structures don’t give an inch as they push through the white frames that surround them and outward. There is no background or foreground, thus each component is equally important. Therefore, her approach entails the largest level of danger per unit of space. Every component is awake and focused.
Read more about the artists here. Naito and Kuwayama live and work in New York City. Naito’s work is in the permanent collections of San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA; Voorlinden Museum, Wassenaar, Netherlands; Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ; Museo de Arte Contemporaneo, Buenos Aires, Argentina; and The Larry Aldrich Museum, Ridgefield, CT.
Kuwayama work is in the permanent collections of Guggenheim Museum, New York City, New York, USA; 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, Japan; Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, California; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, California; The National Museum of Art, Osaka, Japan; and Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana.