Chihiro Yoshioka: griglie – ACG 20th Anniversary Vol. 6

2023.11.11 [sat] - 12.16 [sat] 11:00-18:00 (Saturdays -17:00) Closed on Sun, Mon and national holidays

ARTCOURT Gallery is excited to present an exhibition by Chihiro Yoshioka. The exhibition title “griglie” is the plural of “griglia,” Italian for grate or grid.

From roses blooming in gardens and autumn leaves gleaming under azure skies, to the garments worn by saints on icons, Yoshioka takes things and scenes encountered during her daily routine, or travels, and “copies” them to a grid drawn on
the canvas to produce a painting. When she translates the discrepancies between reality and perception highlighted by that process, the gaps in memory, into understated brushwork characterized by omission and supplementation, or uses pigment in multiple variations of the same color to explore the colors that drift across her memory, it could be said that
the very theme of her painting production lies in the intimate yet unshrinkable distance, that elusive space, between herself and the subject.

The “incommunicable that resides in the gap Yoshioka detects between real and image, is offered to the viewer wrapped in multiple layers, courtesy of the careful superimposing of colors and delicate touches on the grid, and of various
painting-related questions—of illusion and planarity, figure and ground, temporality—supplemented by the viewer’s own imagination to form an even richer tapestry of imagery, still drifting.

“Something identical to that seen in front exists not with it at all, but in a state of subtle misalignment.”[1]
For Yoshioka, who when she sees objects and paints pictures, is fascinated by this state of existence, the grid serves as
a baseline that allows the image as a whole and the “misalignment” to coexist in the act of “copying” while maintaining
a certain distance between subject, picture plane and self, and also as a way to bind the viewer’s consciousness to
the transparent membrane that makes the painting possible, but which itself cannot be seen.

Alongside a renewed focus on the grids that form the backbone of Yoshioka’s painting, this first solo show by the artist in six years, since 2017, also aims to embody and share the precarious presence that is “color” through a new group of works featuring new motifs such as lemons and flagstones, as well as her long ongoing sub rosa series.

[1] Chihiro Yoshioka, “Essay,” in Chihiro Yoshioka: Mimesis (Osaka: ARTCOURT Gallery, 2018), 49.

[ Artist statement ]

Grapefruit, lemons, grapes.
Pondering the painterly effects of fruit, I opened the curtains, placed some fruit on the desk, and set about capturing it in watercolors.

In Manet’s paintings, for example, fruits such as these are often positioned toward the bottom right of the picture plane.
Rolling, a grapefruit suggests the presence of the floor.
Lemons, placed alongside a knife seemingly on the brink of falling, and grapes, sitting beside railings, only serve to further confound the viewer’s spatial perceptions.

As for me, the more I look at them, the more impossible they become to paint.
I end up taking each in my hand while it can still be eaten.
Thus unable to even start painting them, I ate these pieces of fruit, which by now had lost much of their flavor.
The cut surface of the last, sliced in half, was illuminated by the light of the riverbank.
It struck me as a most lovely surface, but I decided to tuck the sight away in my memory and eat it, having given up on painting.

In my workspace, shafts of light from the mountains shut out, I prepared a lemon and ten different yellow pigments, and
set about making a fresco.
I painted lemon after lemon in yellow, peeling off each, and stuck them in layers on mortar mixed with pigment.
When I displayed twelve in a grid pattern for photographing, a new overall picture emerged not obvious on individual viewing.

Since I started incorporating grids in my work, the landscapes and objects I’ve chosen have been split like puzzle pieces, while retaining their overall visage.
Though it would be concerning in a puzzle, a picture is more forgiving of parts that have been erased, or replaced.
The important thing is to retain the overall look, and my interest lies in the state of the whole that people can identify instantly.

At this exhibition I will search for boundaries that can preserve the overall picture, in the expectation that any missing parts will be made up for in the seeing.

Chihiro Yoshioka

Related events

  • Nov. 25 [Sat.]
    2:00pm − 3:30pm Talk [ Tadashi Kobayashi (Curator, Hyogo Prefectural Museum of Art) & Chihiro Yoshioka ]
    3:30pm − 5:00pm Reception
    * RSVP required for the talk (Email. / Tel. 06-6354-5444) (First 20 applicants).
    * Free admission.


Chihiro Yoshioka