Taro Shinoda “Katsura”

Misa Shin Gallery

poster for Taro Shinoda “Katsura”
[Image: Shinoda Taro, "Katsura 05" (2020) Oil on canvas, 120 x 95 cm (47.2 x 37.4 in)]

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Closed Today (Monday)

Taro Shinoda’s new works employ basic oil painting materials, sizing linen canvas with rabbit skin glue and using walnut oil as a painting medium. Nevertheless, they are distinctly unlike the conventional paintings that we are familiar with. Standing in front of one of these works, viewers feel unsure about what distance and what angle to view the painting from. Extending inwards from the edges of each work is a large margin of linen canvas, which curves away from the viewer as it approaches the center, creating a depression with a depth of about 5 centimeters. In the center is a flat area covered by an abstract composition of colors and grid lines, painted with oil paints.

As part of the process behind the production of these paintings, Shinoda found his way to Katsura Rikyu, the Katsura Imperial Villa on the outskirts of Kyoto. Perceiving that the Japanese aesthetic concept of structure differs from the commonly-taught dimension-based concept grounded in two- and three-dimensional structures, Shinoda endeavored to bring out that difference in these paintings by giving emphasis to the elements of Japanese architectural tradition as symbolized by Katsura Rikyu. In the sense of taking time and space as a single lineage, his new paintings approach the structure of Katsura.

“What I was attempting to do in these paintings is not consistent with the so-called Western approach to painting. They are paintings in appearance and shape, and formally they can be described in the context of painting, but these are not works that emerged as part of such a stream or such trends.”

Shinoda had felt ill at ease with the Western understanding of time and space ever since his early career as a landscape architect specializing in traditional Japanese gardens, and he began to wonder how he had acquired his own ideas of time and space. The distance from which we view a painting can be thought of as a physical action based on components of our shared awareness and on the ways of living, society, and culture that are extensions thereof. This new series, Katsura, derives from revisiting that thinking to question once more the premises that lie behind it.



from November 14, 2020 to January 30, 2021
Closed from December 27 to January 4.


Taro Shinoda



Venue Hours

From 12:00 To 19:00
Closed on Mondays, Sundays, Holidays


Address: 1F 3-9-11 Minami Azabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo 106-0047
Phone: 03-6450-2334

11 minute walk from exit 4 at Shirokane-takanawa Station on the Namboku or Toei Mita line, 11 minute walk from exit 1 at Azabu-juban Station on the Namboku or Toei Oedo line, 11 minute walk from exit 1 at Hiroo Station on the Hibiya line.

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