PAST EXHIBITION

YOHEI YASHIMA: TOUCH


SEPTEMBER 10 - OCTOBER 30, 2021

Opening Reception: Friday, September 10, 6-8pm

Photo by Guillaume Zicarelli

SEIZAN Gallery New York is pleased to announce TOUCH, the first solo exhibition in New York City of Japanese artist Yohei Yashima

The show features eleven new oil paintings and installations completed in Japan during, and since, the pandemic period began last year. The show opens on Friday, September 10, 2021. The opening reception with the artist is scheduled for Friday, September 10, 6-8pm.

Born in 1985 in Shimane, Japan, Yashima studied at Kyoto Saga University of Arts, then entered the PhD program at the School of Art in Hiroshima City University. Yashima’s favored subject matter is often the mass-manufactured plastic figurines of children. The artist finds them on eBay or in souvenir shops, and places them in isolated settings. The somewhat ominous scenarios stir the viewer to imagine longer, more complex narratives. 

“I am curious about sorrow, anger, anxiety…. how “clumsy” one can be when it comes to handling emotions,” says Yashima. “I am trying to capture such discombobulating emotions through the figurines carefully placed on the canvas. I aim to make them humorous, to sublimate such emotions.”

In the exhibition “TOUCH,” Yashima explores the subject so many have experienced since early 2020: lack of face-to-face human communication. His signature figurines are now locked inside iPhone displays, attempting to kiss and touch each other, or are simply giving up on communication.  Yashima has also completed two large scale paintings titled “MANDARA.” They are kaleidoscopic images of solar powered toys of Mona Lisa and Queen Elizabeth II. Yashima chose them as representations of goddess figures of Western cultures. Their reproduction as a solar powered toy, forever waving or nodding, suggests their "divine" power to affirm existence without exception. Placing them as the mirrored MANDARA, Yashima gives an Eastern twist to the imagery. 

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