Perrotin is pleased to announce BADA BING, BADA BOOM, the first ever solo exhibition of MADSAKI. This occasion will mark the first opportunity to see the full range of works by MADSAKI in Seoul, Korea.
New works will be featured in the exhibition, including works based on scenes from classic American films popular among Koreans such as Roman Holiday, Léon: The Professional, Rebel Without a Cause, Gone With the Wind, Indiana Jones and Sound of Music. In addition, the Self-portrait and Flower Series by Andy Warhol, as well as new works from MADSAKI's Character Series, an assemble of American and Japanese characters, will also be on view. MADSAKI, a master of spray paint, uses the paint splashing nozzle like a brush, a technique which ultimately yields wild, yet delicate works.
At an early age, MADSAKI moved to the U.S from Japan. Upon arrival at John F. Kennedy International Airport, he observed and was impressed by sights of graffiti scattered throughout New York's neighborhoods. This environment, energized by a proliferating and eclectic street art scene seemingly threatening to engulf the cityscape, became his passion. After graduating from Parsons School of Design, he worked as a bike messenger, constantly traveling around town making deliveries. Eventually he joined The Barnstormers, a group of artists mainly from New York and Tokyo, who actively collaborated on paintings, videos, performances and other forms of art production. He experimented and began to develop his unique means of expression. After returning to Japan, he began to draw slangs on canvas using spray paint, the medium favored by graffiti writers.
Spray paint is a powerful tool that injects and peppers paint, allowing Graffiti artists to quickly cover huge walls or storefront shutters and billboards, or sides of subway trains with large letters a few meters wide. The paint that scatters through the air under pressure does not require any physical contact with its user, irregardless of whether the surface flat or uneven. Ordinarily, it would be considered a violent act to use spray paint on a canvas which is more often appropriate for delicate paintings displayed indoors. Yet the enticing attraction of the motifs in MADSAKI's works seem familiar and are strongly tied to the details that reside within those spattered paint particles.
"I prefer dripping or grimy lines to clean lines. I really do not try and paint finely at all. There are way too many people who are good at painting beautifully. I'm happy to leave that up to them. If you overdo your spraying, you get something that is too flat. So I intentionally use stencil caps, and also overlay paint on the background to give texture. I am painting with spray, not with a brush," says MADSAKI.
Letters and characters drawn by graffiti writers have the power to agitate the urban system, which single-mindedly repeats production and transmission, especially when what is drawn has no specific meaning or message. Upon viewing an image by MADSAKI, our mind is shaken; by his use of lines and colors that seem to make his works resemble the originals on which they are based, and by his use of splattered and dripping paint (in some works paint is dripping form the eyes of the character!). MADSAKI uses stencil caps to create his desired images - paint is injected as a fine line, yet those dispersing paints, carrying a stream of air, are precisely the noisy process of an image invading an information-orientated society.
MADSAKI was discovered by Takashi Murakami, while surfing Instagram for images. MADSAKI reinterprets masterpieces of the past, such as those of Henri Matisse, with spray paint. Similarly, MADSAKI has collaborated with Murakami as seen in his series Homage to Takashi Murakami Flowers, which depicts Murakami's Flower with spray paint. Seeing the pictures of MADSAKI's wife that he usually uploads on Instagram, Murakami suggested that MADSAKI paint his wife. Thus, the Wife series, in which MADSAKI's wife is portrayed in natural postures wearing a kimono in an "autobiographical" style, was born.
Using motifs that is familiar and somewhat well-known the images created by MADSAKI that initially draws viewers in will leave them filled with feeling akin to being struck by a noise-like dynamic impulse. The reason for these intimate motifs possessing attributes that one just takes in with a light heart is probably because one is enticed by MADSAKI's (very pure?) process of "painting". "I can't draw a face. So, would a Smiley Face do?" says MADSAKI. He arranges a flowage of images easily and brings them to life - BADA BING, BADA BOOM! His dynamic use of jetting paint tool, in such wild yet delicate strokes, invigorates the thin surface of painting, and its noisy vibrancy of the impulse never ceases to excite us living in this world of informationorientated world. You are invited to stand in front of the genuine works, experience MADSAKI's painting process and spend sometime on a journey tracing his footpath.
Press release courtesy Perrotin.