Japanese artist Katsumi Hayakawa’s European debut at Micheko Gallery

3-D PAPER ART PICTURE POST 

Japanese paper artist and sculptor Katsumi Hayakawa recently ended his solo exhibition “Paper Works: New Horizons” at the Micheko Galerie in Munich at the beginning of February 2012. It was the first single showing of work by the artist to be held in Europe.

Artist Katsumi Hayakawa at the Micheko Galerie in Munich. Image courtesy of Micheko Galerie.

Hayakawa’s three-dimensional paper frameworks have earned him much acclaim from architectural communities around Asia and the US. Despite this, his work has remained relatively unknown in Europe. Micheko Galerie co-founder Michele Vitucci told Art Radar that this was one of the best-attended exhibitions in the gallery’s history. Visitors were struck, he said, by the meticulous detail and craftsmanship that went into each work, which many attributed, perhaps stereotypically, to a Japanese sense of artisanship.

Through his abstracted renderings of urban landscapes, the artist aims to portray the loneliness of the modern city. He believes that urban construction embodies “the absence of existence, the absence of nothingness and the absence of the absence of absence”, and his inclusion of metallic materials evokes images of microchips and circuit boards, probing the relationship between the real and the virtual, what is natural and what is fabricated.

Katsumi Hayakawa, 'Composition #16', 2011, mixed media. Image courtesy of Micheko Galerie.

Katsumi Hayakawa, 'Trans Grid Construction' and 'Code Blue 3', 2011, mixed media. Image courtesy of Micheko Galerie.

Katsumi Hayakawa, 'Trans Grid Construction 3', 2011, mixed media. Image courtesy of Micheko Galerie.

Katsumi Hayakawa, 'Composition #17', 2011, mixed media. Image courtesy of Micheko Galerie.

Katsumi Hayakawa, 'Blue Lines', 2011, mixed media. Image courtesy of Micheko Galerie.

Hayakawa’s current style evolved from his desire to investigate layering in artwork. He originally worked in sculpture and wood carving before moving into paper works, and was attracted to the expressive potential and versatility of the medium. He explored layering acrylic on paper and carving out patterns before moving on to the three-dimensional, architectural works he is now known for.

Paper also has a personal resonance with the artist; paper art and origami is deeply rooted in Japanese culture. Hayakawa says that working with paper brings back memories of childhood, when he would make traditional crafts at home and in school. Some have also noted a spiritual element to his practice, relating his expansive webs to the Buddhist notion of total interconnectedness. His methods, too, are meditative, demanding a patient, repetitive and meticulous focus.

Katsumi Hayakawa, 'Lost and Found', 2007, oil and acrylic on canvas. Image courtesy of Micheko Galerie.

Katsumi Hayakawa, 'Blue Dots', 2007, oil and acrylic on canvas. Image courtesy of Micheko Galerie.

More on Katsumi Hayakawa

Katsumi Hayakawa is represented by the Micheko Galerie in Munich. Born in 1970, the artist is a graduate of Tokyo’s Nihon University and the School of Visual Arts in New York. He was the artist-in-residence for the Triangle Art Association in Brooklyn, New York from 2006 to 2007. He has had several solo exhibitions around the US and Asia, including another recent exhibition at the Nou Gallery in Taiwan entitled, “Urban Landscapes“.

PR/KN/HH

Related Topics: Japanese artists, urban art, paper art

Related Posts:

Subscribe to Art Radar for more on Japanese contemporary artists


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.