After graduating from Joshibi Univerisity of Art and Design, Masako Asaba studied at KONSTFACK University college of Arts, Crafts and Design, Stockholm Sweden. She shows her new style of Japanese painting both in Japan and Overseas. In recent years, she has focused on Shunga and strived to make it into her own style. She explains that Shunga is an art known worldwide but is hesitated in Japanese museums because they express the Shunga paradox of Japanese society. She enjoys the difference between Japanese and Western nude paintings.
Generally, in the history of western art, women turn their gaze to men as observers.
But women in Shunga are not aware of viewers and behave without any hesitations.
Deference in characteristics such as these have pulled Masako Asaba further into Shunga art.
The women in her paintings enter into the new art world where customs are more open than the closed Shunga world and the women take on attractive expressions. Masako Asaba successfully makes a new style of Shunga with layers and outlines of female figures.
While Mitsuru Ichikawa was in school, her works were submitted to a number of exhibitions and awarded numerous prizes. Her distinctive talent attracted strong admiration at these exhibitions. Using many layers of different materials, colors and “sgraffito” technique, she creates her signature rainbow-colored style. “Night sea journey”, a psychological concept of Carl Jung, underlies her works. She expresses her complex mental views of “life” and “death, “virtuality” and “reality” using mirrors or other objects. Ichikawa says “sgraffito seems to cure broken souls and is a must-have technique for my creation. It may give a direction to my style”.
Suzume Uchida is a young art collector as well as a model for a number of painters. She debuted as an artist in 2014 with a series of black-and-white miniatures drawn in pencil. Since then she has expanded her world of creativity into oil painting, ink paintings and installation works. Splendor, as well as fastidiousness, makes us feel the transcendent and fragile nature of her art. Her works which embody a range of the spiritual phases of human beings have inherent capaciousness which is subtly perceived by the viewer.
Gizan Katoh became an independent artist after studying with Shubun Iwamatsu, the Busshi (sculptor of Buddhist statues) descended from Koun Takamura. He focuses his work by projecting himself into "the aesthetic of Japan" rooted in its history, tradition and culture, and to "impermanence." He enters the creative process by embracing the fact that he is "Japanese" and "Busshi, " and explores what this means for artists of our time as he seeks after truth.
Before graduating from Toyo Institute of Art and Design, Hiroshi Kobayashi was awarded the New Face Award of the 47th Shutaiten Exhibition (Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum) in 2011. Since graduating in 2012, Kobayashi’s creativity has flourished resulting in his contribution to exhibitions at department stores in Tokyo, galleries and others. His creative theme is "the present," the real world around him. Visual reality and "beauty" are pursued through the medium of oil painting. His light-dark expression created by using vibrant red and blue in the deep-color-tone range is distinctive. He believes that the pursuit of reality in his works is fascinating as it can mirror the inner face of a viewer.
A graduate of Tama Art University, Department of Japanese Painting, he completed a Doctorial Degree Course, Tama Art University in Japanese Painting.
In 2007, while in school, he submitted his work to Japan Fine Arts Exhibition and won a prize for the first time. Subsequently he has submited work to the exhibition every year (up to today). The highly sophisticated drawing techniques and the traditional subject of Kacho-ga (painting of flowers and birds) are truly characteristic Japanese painting, and yet the color is extremely individual and innovative. Expressions of the texture of "the light", such as in glassy clarity of ripples on a surface of water, are thickly painted in high relief and exquisite strokes. His works contain traditional expression and innovative technique. Woven in layers, he extends his range of expression to create new "beauty" suiting the times, while supporting the traditional value of Japanese paintings.
Miho Hirano is attempting to express the fragility of life as well as its maturity and continuously changing circumstance. The flowing lines of curves and the subtle colors are signature elements in her works. She successfully composes in one frame human and natural motifs such as flowers, birds, fish or water. Her delicate oil paintings invite viewers to her world in which decorative beauty and fragility perfectly co-exist.
Akihiro Mitsumoto has a unique background. Having once joined an established architectural design office, he changed his profession to become an artist. He won a prize at the Hakujitsukai Exhibition for his first submission and has been a successful artist ever since. His paintings are known for their distinctive background. The smooth surface is a shimmering black like Japanese Urushi-lacquer or glimmering white like porcelain. The rich blank space he creates in his works recalls the beauty of Japanese traditional painting. The realistically painted figures float from the pictures to create a connection to viewers. We can’t wait for his new creations with his unique sense of beauty gained from experience as an architect.
"A grain of rice, a one-yen coin, such things being right there are the ones that indeed connect to everything" says the artist, Yukyo Yamamoto. Since he was in school, his works have been submitted to a number of exhibitions and awarded grand prizes. His success provides increased opportunities for exhibition. His art ranges widely from flat-surface works to installations. The underlying purpose of his production is to connect a micro world such as a grain of rice or a one-yen coin to a wider macro world. Although his motifs are the micro one-yen coin and grain of rice, the scale of the world in his works embraces universal concepts. He invites the viewers to create and feel the macro world around them through his works.
Shinichi Wakasa majored in Japanese Painting at the Department of Fine Arts, Faculty of Painting, Hiroshima City University, and learned traditional Japanese painting techniques. While in university, he submitted his drawings to Nihon-Bijutsu-INTEN Exhibition where he was awarded a prize.
His graduation works were purchased at prices equivalent to the top members of the university faculty. After completing graduate school, he received the second prize of "Gekkan Bijutsu the Rookie of the Year Award 'debut 2013'" hosted by one of the leading art magazines in Japan. At this time, he began creating drawings on the motifs of a lion and tiger in the style in Yamato-e (classical Japanese paintings) as well as the Gods (mythical beasts) of the ancient mountain worship.
His humorous perspective of the world represents the influence of subcultures such as animation and manga. Furthermore, the fusion and reflection of the beauty of traditional forms of Japanese paintings, which he learned over 9 years, produces the fascination of his art.