GALLERY

Hiroko Masuko

b. 1982 ; Miyagi, Japan

Currently living in Miyako, Iwate Prefecture.  With unique interpretations such as Bonsai appearing like Chimaera or using empty Bonsai pots to embody the flora and fauna 'after the Bonsai has left' , Masuko elaborates new ideas which expands the image of Bonsai. Her works have already attracted enormous attention in the Japanese art scene.

STATEMENT

Bonsai is a central theme to my work.   Bonsai is the art form of planting trees in a pot and creating a microcosmic scene of nature. It consists of multiple layers of various elements. The size of a pot determines how much the tree can grow.  Branches and trunks which grow freely are shaped artificially with wires. To create the natural-looking, white, dead branches and trunk, a skilled craftsman uses deadwood technique to kill some parts of them with chemicals or a chisel knife. Natural plants which grow in various directions do not have a specific front side obviously. However, in Bonsai there is a front side, which means there is a painterly element to them. Bonsai is created intentionally this way.  Bonsai is the collaborative result of natural beauty and artistic work by a human, a combination I am deeply attracted to.

Born in the 80's, I have experienced our expanding network of cell phones and the internet.  I manage effectively, without a sense of the strangeness of this information society we live in. These networks grow like branches and can exist in a vessel, humans in this case, in the same manner as the trees in a Bonsai pot. Will the information society evolve as the vessel of humans evolve? I feel modern information society is detached from, and has already expanded out of human control. Is our existence in society detached, empty, and vain then?

Both dead and living cells co-exist in Bonsai while the permutation of 0 and 1 is the base of the network. To contrast the image, I use a pen to simply draw in black and white, uniform lines. I first place in the canvas what I see or what I am influenced by in daily life, such as books, plants or the internet. I call these objects the 'seeds' of my drawing work. Once the seeds are planted, then I grow them into trees in a vessel, which is the canvas.  While they seem to grow freely on the surface, the seeds do not recognize that they are ! given specific order, or then they do not want to know it.


Born in Miyagi, Japan  (Living in Iwate , Japan)
Miyagi University of Education, MA in Art Education

SOLO EXHIBITIONS

2013
ART FESTA IWATE / IWATE MUSEUM OF ART
2012
"From new location"/ Gallery Jin Projects, Tokyo
2011
"bonsai sapiense"/ Gallery Jin Projects, Tokyo
2009
"bonsai" / roppongi hills ART+DESIGN STORE A+D
"BONSAI Sword Legend" / Gallery Jin Projects, Tokyo
"The garden of my act" / TWS HONGO,Tokyo
2008
"Tree+Man" / Gallery Jin Projects, Tokyo
2007
Hiroko MASUKO exhibition / TOKYO WONDER WALL
Hiroko MASUKO exhibition / SEISHI NAKAMOTO PRIVATE museum, SENDAI
Hiroko MASUKO exhibition / re:bridge edit, SENDAI
2006
Hiroko MASUKO exhibition / cafe Mozart atelie,SENDAI
Hiroko MASUKO exhibition / TOHOKU INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY ICHIBANCHO LOBBY,SENDAI

GROUP EXHIBITIONS

2013
"Ouroboros and HANAKAMURI" / Cyg art gallery,Morioka
2012
Hong Kong contemporary / HK
ART KYOTO 2012 / Kyoto
3331×Wawa project / Art Fair Tokyo 2012
2011
Open Call for Art Project Ideas 2011 Exhibition / Hiroshima MOCA 
Tsuchizawa Bonsai / Art@Tsuchizawa
2010
The 10th Gunma Biennale for young artists 2010 / THE MUSEUM OF MODERN,GUNMA
Toyota Art Competition, / Toyota Municipal Museum of Art
Winter session / Gallery Jin Projects, Tokyo
PLUS Contemporary Art Fair / Tokyo
2009
"The Broom" / art jam contemporary,TOKYO
"Girl's Zone 05" / art jam contemporary,TOKYO
2008
"SHITSURAI/2008" Gallery Jin Projects, Tokyo
SECRET AUCTION@KANDADA/project space KANDADA,TOKYO
2007
AMUSE ART JAM 2007 in KYOTO/The Museum of Kyoto
TOKYO WONDER WALL 2007/MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART TOKYO
HANGA MIYAGI / sendai mediatheque
28th HITOTUBO Exhibition/Guardian Garden, Ginza, Tokyo
2006
HANGA MIYAGI / sendai mediatheque
31th A national university print exhibition/Machida-shi international print Museum,Tokyo
2005
LIVE DROWING/ sendai mediatheque
Live leading&live painting/TOHOKU INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY ICHIBANCHO LOBBY,SENDAI

AWARDS

2010
Toyota Art Competition, award for excellence / Toyota Municipal Museum of Art
2007
28th HITOTUBO Exhibition, selected
Artist share vol.3, selected
The Tokyo Wonder Wall Prize/Tokyo Wonder Wall 2007

PUBLIC COLLECTION

Japigozzi collection