iGlass 2014

Bert van Loo


Levant Art started in 2010, with a worldwide exploration of sculptures in glass. In 2012/13, we took a close look at Czech and Slovakian sculptures. Now, in 2014, we are presenting the best Japanese artists with intriguing creations.

Posted 26 November 2014

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This choice is not by accident. First of all, Japan is China’s neighbor. Japan also has progressive glass teaching programs at many universities, which has resulted in tremendous artistic improvement in a short period of time. As Levant Art focuses on sculptural glass, we are proud to present an excellent selection of 11 artists.
I will introduce them in alphabetical order: 

Harumi Yukutake

Harumi Yukutake: Allong Lines, 2014

A sculptor who defines space as a poem. Her artworks are very sensitive, and yet made in an ordinary way, so the works are easy to approach. The mirror pieces exist in various shapes, but you will always be surprised how they reshape the surrounding and try to mislead you a bit. You will meet yourself, not in the usual way - but scattered into pieces. It’s not just mirroring. She defines you and your surrounding in unexpected ways, and makes you wonder where you are. 

Kazushi Nakada

His pieces belong to an imagined world that is there - and not there. Kazushi attempts to bring hidden imagery out of obscurity, the unconscious into the world of light and reality, inviting his audience to share intuitive experiences that relate to what he refers to again and again as the ‘undercurrent’. Occasionally a specific process, like the growth pattern of a seed, is translated into glass, as in a piece called Garden X. The inspiration for this came from watching a seed change and grow as a result of daily watering. 

Kazushi Nakada: Garden X, 2014

Makoto Nishikawa

Makoto Nishikawa: Reflected in the Moon, 2014

This work struck me, because the precision in perception of space. He has done a number of commissions, and you can see how well his works fits into the surrounding. His work is sensitive, carefully balanced, and witnesses a sharp observation of circumstances. The concept for his art work is based on intuition, while observing natural phenomena like the moon.

Masahiro Nick Sasaki

The material, glass, is inorganic. Yet, when molten, it reveals its organic state. This and other characteristics are clearly presented in these pieces. By sandblasting his pieces, Masahiro Nick Sasaki brings glass back to one of the basic ingredients: sand. “I participate in the cycle of transformation caused by fire and wind,” he said. The result: remarkable objects showing great strength while looking very fragile. 

Masayo Odashi

Massayo Odahashi: The Entrance, 2014

She talks about the fairy tale of the white rabbit, and about trips with her parents to the Ise-Shrine. Her works fascinate people from different cultures all over the world. Personally,
I would describe her work as self-reflective and slightly melancholic. The figures she uses are real and yet seem to come from another worl. And there is an interesting duality in her work. Girls, Rabbits and more in reflecting poses, unreachable. 

Ryoji Shibuya

“Glass is an extremely interesting material,” said Ryoji Shibuya, “as it simultaneously possesses both interior space and exterior form. Not only do we see a 3 dimensional shape, but we experience the richness of inner light.” True, but many others use this technique to create their works, so it is difficult to remain authentic. However, he manages again and again to make artworks with a very personal touch, in which you can feel his deep consciousness. 

Ryoji Shibuya: A Blue View, 2014

Shiho Tokoro

She is trying to catch a drizzly day or, better yet, rain is inspiring her - and she knows very well how to transform this atmosphere into a sculptural piece. Her work is made up of multi-layered glass blocks surrounded by transparent green. Inside the glass blocks, one sees the light reflection on the enclosed airdrops. It reminded me of ancient Japanese block prints in which rain really felt wet. She is able to create her own unique poetic world, defined in vitalizing sculptures. 

Shunji Omura

Shunji Omura: Zeko #02, 2014

I was really impressed when I saw his work the first time. He has made a few remarkable big commissions, which were very successful and unique (as far as I know). For this exhibition, he created an object like a sword, using it as a peace symbol, which is made out of hot glass on a stainless steel pipe. This is very, very difficult to achieve – and it proves his unbelievable skill in handling hot molten glass. His sculptures are personal, powerful and give evidence of a creative and sensitive mind. 

Toshio Iezumi

Laminated sheet glass, cut, ground and polished, are the basic elements of his work. Toshio Iezumi is well aware of the optical qualities of glass, and uses a reflection coating to emphasize the depth inside the object. With utmost precision, he transmits light so that with each move you make, you will experience another sculpture. 

Yoshiaki Kojiro

When I saw his works without knowing him, my first thought was Zen. Yoshiaki’s work reminded me of the beauty of Japanese stone gardens. Hard to encompass – and even harder to describe. You have to see it and to feel it, whatever “it” is. After you have experienced it, you may agree with me: his work is very authentic, well defined, balanced, has great power of expression - and yet it’s sober and pure as can be. 

Yukako Kojima

Young and beautiful work. Yakako says that her inspiration is the beauty of nature. She is a master in catching the light, with a preference for natural light. Her pieces show not only the beauty of the material - she creates very balanced sculptures which show great serenity.
All these artworks have been chosen because of their originality, meticulous craftsmanship, powerful expression and outspoken beauty.
Welcome to this extraordinary exhibition.
Curator: Bert van Loo,
107 Huqiu Rd
Shanhai 200002
+8621 52135366

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