Freedom and Forms in Gutai: Tsuyoshi Maekawa x Yuko Nasaka

Beijing

2024.5.18 – 6.29

Whitestone Gallery Beijing is honoured to present "Freedom and Form of the Gutai: Tsuyoshi Maekawa and Yuko Nasaka” duo exhibition. This exhibition traces the artistic endeavours of both artists from the 1960s to their most recent works, the aim is to present their exploration and experimentation with the material, creative passion and inventiveness that be shown during their artistic career.

Both Tsuyoshi Maekawa and Yuko Nasaka were members of the Gutai Art Association, an avant-garde group founded in 1954 by Jiro Yoshihara in Osaka, and one of the most influential groups in the history of Japanese art. The group's slogan, "Do what no one has done before," is exemplified by each artworks’ distinct style and identity. Starting in the early 1960s, with the opening of the Gutai Pinacoteca and the addition of new members, Gutai's focus shifted from the physical and performative nature of the first generation to the use of unconventional materials and tools by its second generation, exploring the connection between picture plane and space. Tsuyoshi Maekawa and Yuko Nasaka were in the second generation - Maekawa employs various fabrics in his work, using techniques like sewing, cutting, and painting to express the tension of materials; Nasaka expands the boundaries of art with her continual exploration of circular forms.

Tsuyoshi Maekawa (b. 1936) has been using fabrics throughout his artistic career, using sewing machines, hand-stitching, and stretching to mould shapes, and they are enhanced by a vibrant palette, reflecting a strong Abstract Expressionism influence. His textured, relief-like surfaces lend a cutting-edge conceptual and emotional depth to his works, ranging from the primal spiritual force of the early 1960s to the passionate yet delicately flowing expressions in post-2000, prompting a re-evaluation of fabric as a material as well as initiating a dialogue between freedom and art.

Untitled 120209

2012
Acrylic on sewn burlap
53.0 × 45.5 cm

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Untitled

1965
Burlap, oil on canvas
162.5 × 132.0 cm

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Work

1999
Burlap and acrylic on canvas
20.0 × 20.0 cm

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Untitled 170375

1975
Burlap and oil on canvas
51.5 × 36.5 cm

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Untitled 120209

2012
Acrylic on sewn burlap
53.0 × 45.5 cm

More Info

Untitled

1965
Burlap, oil on canvas
162.5 × 132.0 cm

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Work

1999
Burlap and acrylic on canvas
20.0 × 20.0 cm

Sold

More Info

Untitled 170375

1975
Burlap and oil on canvas
51.5 × 36.5 cm

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Untitled 120209
Untitled
Work
Untitled 170375

ABOUT

Yuko Nasaka (b. 1938), influenced by her family's business in manufacturing measuring instruments, has been familiar with the form of the circle since childhood. Her work is deeply connected to the longstanding tradition of pottery in East Asia, inspired by the potter's wheel, she creates concentric circles and spiral patterns on circular plates. Her techniques, which include scraping and applying colours in a flowing texture and gloss, are related to the pottery craftmanship. Her works not only blend in various traditional aesthetics but also explore the beauty of circular motifs, creating a visual experience through repetition that resonates with "Kinetic Art" and "Op Art" that prevailed in Europe and America during the 1960s, thus endlessly extending and expanding the possibilities of art.

Work GAY-7

1965
Resin and lacquer on board
45.0 × 45.0cm

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Composition GAY-17

1968
Resin, lacquer on board
45.0 × 45.0 cm

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Work GAY-29

1978
Resin lacquer on board
60.0 × 60.0 cm

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Untitled NY-91

2014
Mixed media on board
60.0 × 60.0 cm

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Work GAY-7

1965
Resin and lacquer on board
45.0 × 45.0cm

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Composition GAY-17

1968
Resin, lacquer on board
45.0 × 45.0 cm

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Work GAY-29

1978
Resin lacquer on board
60.0 × 60.0 cm

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Untitled NY-91

2014
Mixed media on board
60.0 × 60.0 cm

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Work GAY-7
Composition GAY-17
Work GAY-29
Untitled NY-91

ABOUT

The exhibition also features selected works by iconic artists of Gutai, including Jiro Yoshihara, Kazuo Shiraga, Atsuko Tanaka, Shozo Shimamoto, Yasuo Sumi, Sadamasa Motonaga, Chiyu Uemae, Takesada Matsutani, Shuji Mukai, further showcasing the diverse and vibrant styles of the group.

Untitled (YJ-148)

Gouache on paper
37.5 × 44.8 cm

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Goshiki Zanmai (J-15)

1976
Oil on canvas
41.0 × 31.8cm

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Work

1971
Acrylic and oil on canvas
52.0 × 64.5 cm

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Untitled

Mixedmedia on board
49.5 × 34.0cm

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Untitled (YJ-148)

Gouache on paper
37.5 × 44.8 cm

More Info

Goshiki Zanmai (J-15)

1976
Oil on canvas
41.0 × 31.8cm

More Info

Work

1971
Acrylic and oil on canvas
52.0 × 64.5 cm

More Info

Untitled

Mixedmedia on board
49.5 × 34.0cm

More Info

Untitled (YJ-148)
Goshiki Zanmai (J-15)
Work
Untitled
Freedom and Forms in Gutai: Tsuyoshi Maekawa x Yuko Nasaka
2024.5.18 – 6.29

BEIJING

Sevenstar Street (E.), 798 Art District, No.4 Jiuxianqiao Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing 100015, China
Tel: +86 10 59920796
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 18:00
Closed: Sunday, Monday
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