Nobuya Hoki

Dates: Jan 20 – Mar 3, 2024
Location: Taka Ishii Gallery Maebashi
Opening reception: Saturday, Jan 20, 17:00 – 19:00

Taka Ishii Gallery Maebashi is pleased to present a solo show of the work of Nobuya Hoki from Saturday, January 20 to Sunday, March 3. This exhibition, the artist’s sixth at Taka Ishii Gallery and his first in five years, will primarily feature his latest paintings.

 The works in this exhibition stem from a concept of “intermingling of figure and ground” that I have been cultivating over the last three to four years. The goal is to establish a symbiotic and holistic relationship between a flawed figure and a flawed ground, with the interconnected figure and ground indispensably complementing one another in the manner of a yin-yang symbol… Figure and ground are clearly defined, yet they coexist as equals without the figure hovering above the ground. I have developed “intermingling” as an approach to realizing this vision.

(Excerpt from statement by Nobuya Hoki, January 2024)

Nobuya Hoki’s nihonga (lit. “double-line painting,” a kanji pun on Nihonga or Japanese-style painting) has evolved significantly since his 2019 solo exhibition through his ongoing exploration of nterplay between figure and ground and increased opportunities to present his work both in Japan and internationally. His cultural background informs his engagement with the East Asian aesthetic of “non-erasure,” in dialogue with his many years of experience with oil painting, a medium with characteristics that place it in opposition to that aesthetic. This dialogue has enriched his understanding of abstraction’s role across Eastern and Western cultures, leading to the production of innovative works inspired by the art histories of both regions. In the current exhibition, there is an emphasis on  interaction between strokes and forms and on  deployment of scale. Lines and forms rendered with a soft, expansive palette bring a palpable physicality to the canvases, with more complex pictorial spaces and a richer sense of painterly illusion. A series of vertically elongated, scroll-like paintings, arrayed horizontally, represents an exploration of a traditional Japanese format, in a deliberate endeavor to forge links with classical Japanese art forms such as folding screens and sliding-door paintings.

Nobuya Hoki was born in 1966 in Kyoto. After completing his master’s at the Kyoto City University of Arts, he has been based in Kyoto. He has exhibited at “The Five story about ART – have always been there -,” Okazaki Mindscape Museum, Aichi (2022); “ASSEMBRIDGE NAGOYA 2017,” Former Minato Dormitory of Nagoya customs, Aichi (2017); “Spider’s Thread – Spinning images of Japanese beauty,” the Toyota Municipal Museum of Art, Aichi (2016); “NEW PHASES in CONTEMPORARY PAINTING A Curator’s Message 2012,” the Hyogo Prefectural Museum of Art, Hyogo (2012); “Texture and Sense (Kime to Kehai),” the Aomori Contemporary Art Centre, Aomori (2012); “Garden of Painting,” The National Museum of Art, Osaka (2010). His work is included in the collections of the Toyota Municipal Museum of Art, Toyota; The National Museum of Art, Osaka; the Takamatsu City Museum of Art, Kagawa; the Okazaki City Museum, Aichi.

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