Oct 6 – Nov 10, 2007
Mark Moore Gallery is pleased to present new works by innovative Japanese artist, Kenichi Yokono, in the Project Room. Yokono produces intricate and complex wood blocks, whose aesthetically pleasing blood-red and white surfaces belie their disturbing details. His works highlight the subtle conflict between the "normalcy" of everyday appearances and the darkest recesses of human imagination - fueled by horror movies, Manga and monsters – that constantly threaten to rise to the surface. This unsettling quality evokes the darker, sinister elements of traditional Japanese culture that have largely been overwhelmed by the simplified, cutesy, plastic cartoon characters of contemporary Japanese pop-culture. By installing the wood block itself as the finished piece, Yokono subverts its traditional function, transforming something that is traditionally a genesis, into a finality. He also eliminates the possibility of copies, and therefore any notion of "mass production", again subtlety referring to and undermining Japanese pop-culture.
By working directly from enlarged initial sketches, Yokono's work retains an energy and freshness that, somewhat paradoxically given it's content, transform his works into attractive and appealing objects, despite their grim overtones. Then again, perhaps the viewer relishes this dark and gory folly and, rather than being overly distracted by their unexpected beauty, welcomes an opportunity to indulge the morbid side of human nature.
Kenichi Yokono graduated from Kanazawa College of Art, Japan in 1997 and has since been awarded both the Tom Eccles Prize and the Eriko Ousaka Prize. He represented himself at Pulse New York in 2005 and has exhibited widely in his native Japan. This will be his inaugural solo show, not only at the Mark Moore Gallery, but also in the United States.
For more information regarding this artist or the opening event, please contact the gallery at 310.453.3031, info@markmooregallery, or www.markmooregallery.com