takashi iwasaki

City and Colour

Yesterday I told you about how I fell in love with Mike Kelley's miniature city the moment I saw it, I even wanted to live there. Will it ever be possible to live in a translucent resin city? Well, that might be something I regret the first morning when I go to take a shower, or possibly when I have to watch others doing the same. However there are places in the real world where colour does rule, and in the past week I've seen a few of them on blogs and on my facebook feed, so I thought I'd round them up for you.

First off, a timely Olympic salute from Plenty of Colour, finds London's Riverbank Arena for field hockey embracing the limitless possibilites of artificial turf. Instead of pretend grass green, they're using a cerulean blue and a hot pink. It's generating buzz from the media, and the decision was not a purely aesthetic one (unlike my life where I make all purchase decisions based primarily on colour) these colours were chosen to be easier for spectators to process. 

Here's the lovely painted house of Katwise, a fabric artist in New York state. She took a shabby white house and transformed it into a piece of colourful art. She chronicles the whole process on her website, including the day she walked into the paint store and said "Give me one of everything!" She's truly an artist living her aesthetic in all aspects of her life. That reminds me, sometime I'll have to give you a tour of my house where colour rules as well, although not this vibrantly.

Finally in Taipei, as part of Very Fun Park 2012 (Really? The project name alone is making me happy!) Takashi Iwasaki has designed beautiful temporary installation on the Fubon Financial Centre. Not only does it look cheerful and buoyant, it perfectly conveys his artistic style on an enormous scale. If you're not going to Taipei, you can find his work on a smaller scale on his website or at an August show in Winnipeg. I'll be going to Winnipeg soon, so I'll check it out and report back.

Colour has the power to uplift our everyday lives when it's used in design. As I mentioned, my own home is very colourful and I find it a cheering contrast to the grey Vancouver weather. Occasionally people ask me for help in choosing their paint colours, and I'm always encouraging them to go for something bold and crazy. It really makes you feel happier, and that's worth a lot!

January is happiness month

Happy New Year!

At a time when I am wishing all my friends happiness, I thought that I would like to spread a little happiness on the blog as well. So all my January posts are going to be about happiness.

In late December I went to see an exhibition of Takashi Iwasaki paintings at the Elliot Louis Gallery. The paintings were actually embroideries on linens, so they are more than just paintings. Several years ago, I met Takashi at his studio when I was in Winnipeg. I bought a drawing from him.

My Takashi Iwasaki drawing!

At the time he had some embroideries as well, but the new work looks much more complex and elaborate. In fact, the needlework is so good that we spent time staring at the works and wondering how they were done, especially the plaid sections!

In his artist statement for the show, Takashi wrote:
Life is too short to take gravely all the time. I want to delight in what I can when I can. Having this as my essential philosophy, my goal of art making is to create a positive and playful atmosphere, and generate warm feelings of intimacy and substance through my work.

The art is full of vibrant energy and oddly engaging titles. I would defy anyone to see these works and not come away smiling. 

I do intend to update the blog more frequently, but then I get busy in the studio and poof…two months have gone by without a new post. So my resolution for 2011 will be write shorter posts more often and to write about different aspects of art and what is inspiring my art. And with my new camera, I’ll take more photos as well so that I can occasionally let a picture take the place of a thousand words.