Capturing a Moment of Beauty at its Peak | Yuzuki Nakanishi Interview
Yuzuki Nakanishi "The Organ that never sleeps" (2023, 73.0 × 91.0 cm, paint on canvas)
The Whitestone Ginza New Gallery is holding a group exhibition entitled "Dimensions II" featuring the works of six gifted young artists, as a project to nurture the future of contemporary art. Its goal is to discover new talent and create opportunities for their presentation. And by exhibiting the works of several artists in the same space, it aims to bring new perspectives for both the viewers and the artists themselves.
For this exhibition, we conducted interviews with the six participating artists in order to reveal their inner worlds. We asked them the same set of questions to find out how they developed their current artistic expressions, and unravel the relationship between art and modern society as depicted in their artworks.
Breaking Down the Notions and Conventions of Art
Group Exhibition of Gifted Artists: Dimensions II
1. What inspired your journey as an artist, and what continues to fuel your creative passion?
ー I originally wanted to be an illustrator, so I started learning drawing when I was in junior high school, which became my entry into the world of art. But by the time I was in high school, I realized that I was more fascinated with oil painting than with drawing. As I began making paintings, I found it very exciting to have the freedom to overturn the conventions that usually get instilled during one's first steps in art, embracing ideas like "painters don't need to use a paintbrush", or that "I don't have to use oil paints despite being in the oil painting course".
2. What do you think are the characteristics that define your artworks?
ー The way I capture the flowing colors at their most beautiful moment, which arises completely by chance.
Yuzuki Nakanishi "Warm Current" (2023, 65.3 × 53.0 cm, paint on canvas)
3. Your artwork entitled "Warm Current" is a key visual of the exhibition. What kind of work is it?
ー I created "Warm Current" in the image of Japan's Kuroshio and Oyashio Currents. I think it evokes images of the countless fish swimming with these currents. The ocean is a vast and mystical place, and visiting it can give you a lot of spiritual energy. For me personally, the strange feeling of elation I get after going on a cruise or ferry ride remains fresh in my memory. I hope that the people who come to the exhibition get to feel the vitality of the ocean from the bright and beautiful colors of this painting.
4. Are there any artists or artworks that influenced you? What do you like about them?
ー Kazuo Shiraga. I like the ambiance given off by his paintings, with intense brush strokes and colors that remain undiminished even if you look at it from a book. I remember feeling my body temperature rise when I saw Kazuo Shiraga's art book in a library one day. I had never felt that much excitement from seeing an art book before.
Group Exhibition of Gifted Artists: Dimensions II
5. What does "art" mean to you?
ー I have been drawing for as long as I can remember, and now I lead a life with a career in illustration, while also creating paintings as an artist. With a life like this, art for me is an extension of the dreams I had as a child, and is also an indispensable part of my daily life, much the same as breathing, eating, and sleeping.
6. What are your expectations from this group exhibition?
ー Ever since I graduated from university, I have had considerably less opportunities to talk with different kinds of artists. Which is why through this group exhibition and interviews, I want to talk a lot with the other artists face to face and hear their stories.
7. What are your plans for the future?
ー In the future, I hope to do an exhibition overseas, and learn about the work that other artists do in other countries. Right now, I am most interested in American art.
Yuzuki Nakanishi "The Good with the Bad #4" (2023, 65.3 × 45.5 cm, paint on canvas)
Yuzuki Nakanishi's fluid art captures onto canvas a spontaneous moment in the life of paint. Their ephemeral beauty is sure to catch the eyes of the viewers and give a sense of elation that feels like the start of a new timeline.
The "Group Exhibition of Gifted Artists: Dimensions II" will run until October 21, 2023. If you can't make it in person, don't worry! You can explore the exhibition anytime online through the Whitestone Gallery Online Store.
Yuzuki Nakanishi "Discrepancy" (2023, 41.5 × 31.8 cm, paint on canvas)
Born in Hokkaido in 2001, Yuzuki Nakanishi graduated from Tokyo Zokei University with a major in Fine Arts in 2022. In the same year, she participated in “the 24th Mitsui Fudosan Retail Management Office Exhibition”. In 2023, her work was selected at the “Tokyo Five Art Colleges’ Degree Show” (the National Art Center). Nakanishi chooses the colors according to the mood of each time, and estimates fluidity and eventuality of the paints as the primary goal. Although she says ‘when the work is completed, the title curiously rises to the surface as if it was the matter of course’, what is reflected in this kind of improvisasional one-shot should be the inevitable product of her own aesthetic framework arising from daily life. Nakanishi is the artist who embodies the possibility of fluid art.