Looking Up by Shintaro and Yoshiko Nakahara

Looking Up

Shintaro and Yoshiko Nakahara

06 November to 25 November 2018

Though each possess very distinct outputs, both Shintaro and Yoshiko’s practices are concerned with precision and planning. They share an intuitive approach and an obsessive, manual process. It is perhaps these qualities that have helped the two artists to successfully develop the “third artist,” a term they use to describe their collaborative practice. While it is easy to draw out the individual artists from their collaborative works – colour from Shintaro and black line work from Yoshiko – the “third artist” is actually inseparable.

The collaborative works form themselves on the canvas, often ending in unexpected outcomes. Yoshiko starts the process with her black line work, creating forms and patterns to compose an empty “colouring-book” composition that invites Shintaro to project his palette onto her more figurative forms. Shintaro then intuitively responds to the existing forms with solid colour. Exploring the dynamics of their collaboration, he may not always “colour within the lines;” sometimes he ignores elements described by Yoshiko’s line-work by blocking several areas with a single colour. It is this ability to follow or disregard Yoshiko’s line work that frees Shintaro to contribute equally to the final form. He controls the weight of the works and how our eye perceives them. Each artist’s unique understanding of the other allows the pair to achieve the balance and compromise required to give physical form to the mental collaboration taking place between them. This exchange of contributions continues until both artists agree that the work is complete.


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