YUGEN Gallery will hold WOK22's solo exhibition "W FLOW" from Saturday, August 26th to Thursday, August 31st, 2023.
A new harmony in everyday life
Flowers and birds are drawn as if clouds and octopuses are intertwined and play with the undulations. A screen with an impressive light blue line with thick borders. WOK22 is a graphic artist who develops a worldview that stirs the imagination with a very limited number of colors. This is the solo exhibition of the artist who participated in the group exhibition "Freestyle Asians" by six Asian artists, which was the opening exhibition of YUGEN Gallery in 2023.
WOK22 has loved looking at the sky since he was a child, and found peace in his mind when he imagined clouds that changed shape every moment and showed different expressions depending on the light. Especially in the season of fresh green, it is said that it is a blissful time to look at the sky while smelling the scent of the lawn.
In this exhibition, "W FLOW," we present paintings that depict the blending and harmony of the five senses in everyday life, such as the wind, the scent of flowers, and the hustle and bustle of the city. About 20 works that I used will be exhibited. I liken the waves generated by natural and man-made objects to the flow of a large river, and depict the emotions that arise as I immerse myself in it.
“Connections” Expressed with Clouds and Tentacles
WOK22 was born in Aichi Prefecture in 1986. Based in Fukuoka, where he moved to when he was a child, he has been working on a wide range of collaborative works, from global brands such as <STUSSY> and <Adidas> to traditional crafts such as Hakata dolls and Fukuoka's Koishiwara ware.
When he was a child, he was fascinated by the coolness of the record jackets, triggered by the record that his mother had, especially the omnibus album "Christmas Aid" series, which used Keith Haring's work on the jacket. Aiming for the path of music, while working hard in band activities in adolescence, he realized that "good music has a good jacket" from "jacket buying" of CDs and records.
“Although I was only thinking about my future with a band or painting, I slowly developed the desire to create graphics and art.”
After graduating from design school, started live painting in the club scene while working for a company. Although he said that he felt bored with the live painting that he started at the invitation, the style of WOK22 caught the attention of the organizers, who said that it was not so-called graffiti art. Activities that fused with painting spread.
At that time, painters who were active in the club scene were invited to an art project planned as commercial facilities such as PARCO began to expand into Fukuoka, and WOK22 raised the stage from the underground to the overground in the style of the street. I grew up with style.
WOK22's works on the theme of "connection", in which objects and objects freely come and go in space and interact with each other, and the depiction of space with a sense of unity demonstrated in live paintings are such relationships between art, people, and society. It can be said that it is something that has risen up in the middle of the day.
Clouds as Symbols of Truth
“Clouds and tentacles have been my motifs for a long time. Both have a sense of floating, and you can feel the free softness of being entwined with various spaces and things.
When I draw, I try to draw the emotions that arise in my daily life and the sensations that arise in response to the atmosphere of the venue during the live painting.
<br>The tentacles are like clouds, and the clouds are like tentacles. ”
Clouds and tentacles that I have been drawing for a long time. He says that recently these motifs have become inseparable and have become an indescribable unified entity. This is influenced by my experience in Hokkaido, which I visited to participate in an art project.
"In Hokkaido, there were clouds that I could almost reach, and what I had seen before as nothing but large masses of clouds appeared to be clusters of tiny cell-like organisms. As soon as it takes shape, it disappears.
What WOK22 draws is a "new harmony" that is created by connecting foreign objects without judging or flattering. The cloud here also emerges as a symbol of the truth that humans can never grasp. Harmony, which is aimed at overcoming conflict, is grand like a cloud, but is straying. Here is our graffiti that lives like grasping the clouds.