artist of the day #68: Shintaro Ohata

Many artist work in both 2 and 3-d but rarely do that work in both at the same time, and never have I seen it done as powerfully and seamlessly as with Japanese artist Shintaro Ohata. His vibrant sculptures meld so well with his lively paintings, it can often be hard to tell that they are separate. I would almost classify his work as being 2.5-d. Also, there is a real sense of warmth to his work. Ohata’s mastery at working with light really makes his pieces come to life.

The pieces are very emotional. He seems to often play with the theme of solitude. Many of the pieces depict one person in a great big busy city and almost never looking toward the viewer or anyone else in the painting. When there is more than one person, they aren’t relating to each other what so ever. The most interaction in any of his pieces is between a little girl and a cat. Also, as real as his pieces feel, he seems to want to play with some level of fiction and fantasy. A few of his pieces have characters that seem to be part animal, or some sort of new species. His work to me is playful yet highly emotional. Each piece comes off like a scene from a movie. And the designs of his characters seem to take influence from both Japanese cartoons and impressionist paintings. Even though they are sculptures they look as though they were made out of sploches of paint.

Unfortunately I can’t attest to what these are like to see n real person. They are currently exhibiting in Tokyo and I spent too much money on skee-ball and temporary tattoos to fly over and check it out. If they are this lively in a photograph, I am sure it is quite the sight in person.

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