Singapore, 16 June 2016 – Kato Art Duo is proud to present Japanese artist, Nara Yoshitomo – Picture Box exhibition in Singapore at the gallery’s premises at Raffles Hotel Arcade. This exhibition will be open to public from 16 June to 18 July 2016. Nara is best known for his cartoon like drawings, paintings and sculptures of children and animals with provocative messages.
Nara Yoshitomo was born in Aomori Prefecture, Japan in 1959. He completed his master’s program at Aichi Prefectural University of Fine Arts and Music in 1987. In 1988, the artist decided to travel to Germany and enrolled into the prestigious Kunstakademie in Dusseldorf where he was taught by Neo-expressionist painter, AR Penck. Nara lived and worked in Cologne from 1994 to 2000 before returning to Japan.
As a child, Nara was often left alone at home while his two older brothers lived away and both his parents worked. There were hardly any museum or galleries in his birthplace. The artist only source of art was through weekly manga comics and Japanese TV animation. Nara often declares his love for music and he believe that his artistic sense developed partly from the art on 1960s – 1980s record covers.
The artist’s wide eyed children painting was often associated with the Superflat movement which started in Japan in the 90s, however at that time, Nara was in fact away from Japan. Art viewers often relate his works to manga and animation, in an interview, Nara states, ‘I’m much more influence by picture books, children’s books with pictures. In a picture book you have a single image that can contain an entire narrative and I think this is a style of visual story telling that I have really learned a lot from and have been influence by.’ He then further explained, ‘If you think about manga and animation, it really is a series of images put together that tell a story.’ Kato Art Duo exhibition, titled Nara Yoshitomo - Picture Box emphasis on Nara’s challenge to communicate stories through his works in a single frame rather than a collection of pictures.