Fragments of Light

Luminous Beauty

Japanese artist, Ayane Mikagi explores the richness and luminosity of traditional Japanese pigments. In this traditional practice, layers and layers of pigment are applied, some of which are ground from precious minerals such as azurite or malachite.

Ayane Mikagi, Sound of the Moon, 2016. ©Yufuku Gallery

In his introduction to the 2017 exhibit, “Keisho-ha IV: A New Materialism,” Yufuku Gallery owner and director Wahei Aoyama points to the innovative use of classical materials and techniques by the young artists represented in the show, calling their works a “‘Return to Innocence’ within contemporary art.” “These works,” he continues, “are devoid of functionality, and stand alone as art for art’s sake.”

Ayane Mikagi, Premonition, 2013. ©Yufuku Gallery

What do you think of the statement: “These works are devoid of functionality, and stand alone as art for art’s sake.” ?

Artist Bio
Japanese artist, Ayane Mikagi, (b.1988) graduated from Tama Art University in Japan in 2015. Her first solo show was presented at the Fujiya Gallery, Tokyo. Her work was included in the 2017 exhibit, “Keisho-ha IV: A New Materialism” at the Yufuku Gallery, Tokyo.

2 thoughts on “Luminous Beauty

  1. Regarding “devoid of functionality” remark: as the fox said to St-Exupéry’s Little Prince: “the essential is what cannot be seen”. Perhaps the gallery owner is trying to say something similar, although it comes off sounding less positive or affirming than how le Petit Prince’s renard put it. (maybe a loss in translation).

    1. Thank you, Br Matthew. It is refreshing to step outside the realms of formalist art theory to speak about things of the heart.

      If I may, another quote from St-Exupéry: “The meaning of things lies not in the things themselves, but in our attitude towards them.”

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