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Written by Satoshi KOGANEZAWA   
Published: December 09 2009

fig. 1 "09013" (2009); ceramic, 6.2x6.9x3.1cm, courtesy of Galerie Ando

fig. 2 "09014" (2009); ceramic, 6.2x6.9x3.1cm, courtesy of Galerie Ando

fig. 3 View from "Yoshiou Sakagishi Exhibition" at Galerie Ando, photo by Mareo SUEMASA, courtesy of Galerie Ando

fig. 4 View from "Yoshiou Sakagishi Exhibition" at Galerie Ando, photo by Mareo SUEMASA, courtesy of Galerie Ando

    A preverbal child, a small animal which we can hold in our hands, or other kinds of things, including toys and craft works - more or less, we would have minds to “love” such living things and other small-sized objectss.  Indeed, the expression of size depends on our feelings since it is a relative thing. It may be unusual for us to “love” things which are taller than ourselves.  “Loving” means putting someone or something under our control.  This may be the reason we often find that sculptures of God and Buddhist images beyond our control are made in large sizes.  It cannot be denied that such sculptures vary in size depending on the strength and depth of faith of their original inspirations.  Nevertheless, as far as I know, it is rare to find pet animals, such as cats and dogs, expressed in large-sized sculptures under than thirty metres in height.

    Can we then consider series of creations made by Yoshiou Sakagishi objects to be loved, because they have been made in small sizes?  His recent works have been created combining drops of porcelain soil made using a dropper, and turning them into figures of various kinds of shapes.  His creations are composed of drops of light colours, such as white and blue. In addition, the spherical shape of each drop remains in the completed works.  In these terms, they can be deemed as objects to be “loved”.
    It is still fresh in my mind that when I encountered his creations in past group exhibitions, including “Roppongi Crossing 2007: Future Beats in Japanese Contemporary Art” (Mori Art Museum, 2007) and “Primary Field” (The Museum of Modern Art, Kamakura and Hayama, 2007) they impressed me as “cute”. I was also surprised me at the high degree of composition in them.  Such impressions must have been due to the fact that his works were created in such a small size that they made me feel as if I could hold them in my hands and  gave me a light impression because of their colours and shapes.
    How then about his new creations shown in this exhibition which was held at Galerie Ando [fig. 1][fig. 2]? There seems to have been no special change in the size of his works.  Nonetheless, we can find some clear differences between his past exhibits and this one.  For example, regarding his works newly created for this exhibition, the colour of the works is dark green and drops of porcelain soil have been piled up with no space among them just like when bricks are laid up upon one another.  Particularly, the impression of them when viewed edged-on is completely different to that of his past works.  In the past pieces, we found a narrow space between each drop.  This seemed to contribute to leaving us with a somewhat sensitive image of his creations.  On the other hand, the exhibits this time make us conscious of the strength of their existence more intensely than his past works.  There is no longer any cuteness in the image of them which remains with us.  Here again, this is be due to their colours and shapes.  Yes, Sakagishi’s new creations show that his works are no longer be able to be deemed objects to be “loved”, namely, those which can be put under our control.  Rather, it may be no exaggeration to say that his creations make us feel they exist strongly and certainly, like God and Buddha, and thus could be considered as objects to be worshipped.
    According to the owner of the gallery, Sakagishi succeeded this time in creating works of various shapes by piling up drops of porcelain soil like bricks. H had not been able to express this in his past works. Nonetheless, the shape of each exhibit is convincing enough to make us feel that each form exists as a unique exhibit although no meaning can be found in any of the shapes.  This cogency contributes to creating the beauty of his works.  It is difficult for me to describe this kind of beauty.  Sakagishi’s new creations made me recognize that sheer beauty could not be truly understood unless viewed with my own eyes, but, once seen, I lost my heart in it.  Eight out of the ten exhibits have been put on separate display boards and arranged in a crescent shape [fig. 3].  The exhibition space, the size of which was relatively smaller than the other rooms in Galerie Ando, left me with the image that it would extend infinitely in a circular motion [fig. 4].
(Translated by Nozomi Nakayama)

Last Updated on November 02 2015

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