Image rights: copyright Leiko Ikemura
studio of the artist
About Leiko Ikemura
Painter, draughtswoman, sculptor, and photographer Leiko Ikemura depicts confrontations between an obscure female subject and mystical landscapes. After spending the first half of her 30-year career studying the expressive possibilities of oil and watercolors in semi-abstract portraits and landscapes, she turned to sculpture in 1984. Mixing eastern and western sculptural traditions, Ikemura worked with bronze, terracotta, and clay to form varied biomorphic forms and fragments of female figures. The turn to semi-figurative sculpture affected the rest of her oeuvre, as these nameless and obscure female figures entered her work, beginning to populate her paintings and photographs. The figures often merge with her landscapes, creating indistinct abstract forms and swathes of color in a return to the expressiveness of her early work. Ikemura uses her intensely formal practice to address questions of gender, war, and religion.
Japanese-Swiss, b. 1951, Tsu, Mie Prefecture, Japan, based in Cologne & Berlin