Born in Tokyo, Japan 1972. Currently lives and works in Tokyo.Read More
Takashi Ishida interacts with several different disciplines: painting, performance, video, and music, which result in a complex yet engaging multi-disciplinary art practise. Ishida produces his work using various tools such as a paint roller, t-shaped water scraper, or water. While some animations are displaced through a single projection others may be of a complex manner and split between three screens. Ishida started his career as a painter however he soon realised that engaging solely in painting was restrictive. The final product of a painting was not his main focus when creating work but he became more interested in the 'process' of making the painting. This naturally led him explore performance art. He had done some 'live drawings' in Shinjuku which was accompanied with recorded classical music or live music played by a friend.
Ishida focused on the relationship between the body movements and the lines created from this; a line was not just a static image but it was a movement. While these performances allowed viewers to observe the 'process there was always a beginning and end. Therefore around 1995 he transitioned to experimenting with stop-motion animations, which became a successful way to capture the process of a painting.
This capturing of the process can be witnessed in his one his earlier animations produced in 2001 title The Art of Fugue. In this work he articulates the music of Bach through a painting stop-motion animation. In the film, there are hand-drawn animations of white rectangles, which continuously expand and contract, while two different styles of lines are overlaid upon them, creating images that mimic the repetitions of the musical fugue. The music and animation become inextricably linked. The layering and synchronisation of painting, video and music builds drama and depth in his work. He explains, 'The reason why I made The Art of Fugue is because I wanted to thoroughly face the music with images…It is not just simply to create pictures that move along with rhythm or impressions of the music'.
Ishida’s more recent work called Burning Chair (2013) was exhibited at his solo show at Taka Ishii Gallery. In Burning Chair, Ishida creates an animation of drawing lines that generate wave-like movements. In this work, Ishida for the first time chooses to use chalk as a medium because of its more temporal quality. In the film, he draws with chalk onto a room in which the floor and walls are made of concrete, and then sprinkles water over his drawing to remove the lines. This drawing, washing away and drying process creates a repetitious image and emphasises the 'movement' of lines that are created and then eliminated. This work can be correlated to his previous work Reflection which was produced in England through a residency program organised by Aspex Gallery (Portsmouth, HK). However, while Burning Chair was made in darker artificial light, Reflection was created from natural light. The natural change of light marks the change of time and becomes part of the movement and changes of lines. While in some of Ishida’s films he is present in the screen in, these two films the artist is omitted. Although there is the absence of the artist there is still a presence of his bodily interactions through the motions of the lines drawn. As he explains, 'Above all, a painter draws a line as a bodily experience of ‘being on the way to make'.
Takashi Ishida works are in the following public collections:
Aichi Arts Center, Nagoya, Aichi
Takamatsu city museum of Art, Kagawa
Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, Tokyo
The Toledo Museum of Art, Ohio
Toyota Municipal Museum of Art, Aichi
Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo, Tokyo
Yokohama Museum of Art, Kanagawa
–Anna Gonzalez Noguchi
Text courtesy Taka Ishii Gallery.
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