Yumiko Chiba Associates is excited to present an exhibition of new work by Motohiro Tomii, who uses predominantly readymade products and household wares to create sculptural works that employ well-articulated compositional techniques. Tomii's practice is distinguished by his combining and shaping through logical manipulation of the objects that form the materials for his sculptures, in the process opening up new methods for the use of these objects, and new actions, with which they were not originally endowed. On this occasion Tomii says the idea for his new work was sparked by the impulse to paint some small cardboard offcuts he happened to have. Then, deciding that he wanted to make those painted offcuts 'sloping,' he used them as the base for a new work, Sloping Sculpture. In his art-making to date, Tomii has endeavoured to identify the precise moment when a mere object becomes 'sculpture' via some sort of manipulation, or change in posture or position. Here he asks whether the modification of a particular object by making it 'slope' or that object being 'sloping' can form a sculpture/work, thus persisting with his explorations throughout this exhibition too. This latest thought-provoking development in the oeuvre of Motohiro Tomii is sure to reward the viewer.
On Sloping Sculpture
Sloping Sculpture started in 2016 when I had a sudden urge to paint a series of cardboard offcuts that were on hand. This was not for the purpose of turning them into a work. Nor was there any obvious sign that they would form a work. I simply concentrated onpainting, and put the resulting pieces to one side of my workspace. I was keen to do something with these painted offcuts, whileretaining this relationship with them.
Turning something that catches one's attention into a work is the royal road in art. What is seen by the whites of the eyes, over time (through experience and accident) starts to shift to the center of the iris, to the very middle of our focus.
Is it possible to retain what we notice in that outer part of our eye, and turn it into art without walking this 'path to a work'? I pondered this as I looked at the offcuts for a year and a half. I wanted to make the offcuts slope. Not make the offcuts into a workby sloping them, but have the fact of the offcuts being sloped, becoming a work. That is what I wanted to make.
Neither vertical nor horizontal but sloping. Works on a tilt are not unusual. They may be propped against walls, suspended from ceilings, stood on an angle. What I wanted to do was, not create a sloping state, but start my thoughts from sloping. Sloping ortilting is art's range of motion, with as yet no visible boundaries.
This latest work takes the shape of a catapult. To me, a catapult symbolises intermingling of the expectation of reaching a predicted point, and hope for an unexpected journey along the way. What begins from here (like this)?
Press release courtesy Yumiko Chiba Associates.
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