Naofumi Maruyama "Transparent Footsteps"

Shugoarts

poster for Naofumi Maruyama "Transparent Footsteps"

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Naofumi Maruyama’s paintings always provide new experiences in the act of looking. Looking does not consist entirely of viewing things that are close or far, or even stationary. We also look at things as they move, as we move and as our mind ponders other things altogether. In the work presented in this exhibition, Maruyama depicts, in single paintings, the extremely complex act of looking.

The painting titled “puddle in the woods 5” is based on Maruyama’s experience of walking through the woods. The outlines of the trees are made ambiguous by blotches of ink, as they overlap with each other, divide the canvas and form various shapes. Then, what might at first have appeared like a pattern in the bark of a tree will suddenly come to resemble a familiar shape. The shape might suggest a tree and branches while at the same time other forms appear, along with colors that undermine that first interpretation. As viewers, we are constantly repeating in our minds a process of recognition and then confusion.

Maruyama's method of staining, whereby paint is made to seep inside an unsized canvas, is – in his words – “similar to breathing, in that you absorb the color - light and then expel it on the canvas.” And a work that has been created by such “breathing” is dynamic enough to alter its appearance depending on what we are looking for, and how we are predisposed to interact with it. In other words, we are given complete freedom in the act of looking.

Naofumi Maruyama was born in Niigata Prefecture in 1964, and he currently lives and works in Tokyo. His major solo exhibitions include "Naofumi Maruyama: 1988-2008" at the Meguro Museum of Art (2009, Tokyo) and "between morning and night" at ShugoArts (2005). Major group exhibitions include "Tsubaki-kai 2010: Trans-Figurative" at Shiseido Gallery (2010, Tokyo), "Berlin-Tokyo/Tokyo-Berlin" at Neue National Galerie (2006, Berlin), "The Elegance of Silence" at Mori Art Museum (2005, Tokyo) and "Happiness: A Survival Guide for Art and Life" at Mori Art Museum (2003, Tokyo). This is his first solo show at ShugoArts in five years.

[Image: Naofumi Maruyama "The puddle in the woods 3" (2010) acrylic on cotton 130.3x162cm]

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From 2010-11-27 To 2010-12-25

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