The Jennifer Lauren Gallery is proud to present
Masao Obata: Drawing Happiness in Red
Launch event 21 June 2017, 6 – 8:30pm
Continues 21-25 June 2017
Dates: 21-25 June 2017
Pop-up Venue: 264 Globe Road, Bethnal Green, London, E2 0JD
Nearest tube station: Bethnal Green – Central Line
Opening times: Wednesday – Saturday 11am-6pm, Sunday 11am-4pm
“I am happiest when I am working and by working I mean drawing.”
Masao Obata (b.1943) only started drawing whilst in his residential care facility in Japan after the age of 60. Raised by his grandmother, Obata moved around many institutions before settling at Hyogo Prefecture for a longer period of time. His strong urge to create led him to source large cardboard pieces to draw on from the kitchens in his facility, as paper was not strong enough for him and he was concerned it would rip easily.
In the facility Obata could be found night after night continuously drawing often on both sides of the cardboard, completing one piece of work each night. He produced thousands of drawings before his passing in 2010, but many were disposed of by the facility that, in the beginning, had not recognised the artistic value of his work.
Often creating in red pencil, Obata stated that for him this was the colour of happiness and fulfillment. The major themes in Obata’s work include family and marriage, both of which eluded Obata during his lifetime. He did on occasions say that the works featuring a man, a woman and a child were himself and his parents, and that he missed them profusely.
Women were often depicted wearing earrings and necklaces, whilst men were known to be featured wearing ties. His drawings also featured a characteristic attention to detail when depicting genitalia in his representations of humans. Other themes included things he observed: vehicles, landscapes and plants.
This exhibition is the first by the Jennifer Lauren Gallery and the first solo exhibition for the late Masao Obata. Bringing together 15 works on cardboard, along with a film of Obata working, it is hoped that many will get to enjoy Obata’s playful works.
“I’m Gary Kleiner, an artist based in Suffern NY, near a place called Hopper House Gallery, the home of Edward Hopper.
I’ve rediscovered my artistic abilities while being hospitalised for several months for depression and anxiety. Whilst resident at Frawley Hall, Good Samaritan Hospital, Suffern NY, and Four Winds Hospital at Katonah, NY, I did arts and crafts. My mom – also an artist – brought me drawing supplies, and I was hooked.
My mental and physical health have clouded my view of the world. I have viewed the world as generally scary, and seeing others as being different than I am. With my view of the world being dark, I interpret it through colours and abstract shapes, seen in my distorted people and moving lines. I use some symbols in my drawings such as the cross which represents faith, church (religion), penises and vaginas, representing sexuality. I include some small writing in some of my drawings. I’m just writing what’s on my mind. The crown in my images pays tribute to the artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, who has influenced my work.
I am a very creative and emotional person who uses art to show others what’s going on in my life. I see art as a major part of my life. Since I was little, I was always searching for meaning to my life, as well as being extremely curious about life and death. I have been using drawing daily as a therapeutic tool to help me with my self-esteem as well as trying to earn money with my art.
My mother, an artist, who studied at The Art Students League in New York, has been a large influence to me by showing me her view of the world through her art. She shared some of her world as an artist and for this I dedicate my work to her. Other artists who I admire are, Picasso, Munch, Basquiat, Dali, Haring and Sesow (a current artist).
I work tirelessly on my art; my goal is to take my art as far as I can go, as well as teaching other people how to express themselves though their art.
I accidentally got the woodcut look by surrounding people, figures and objects with black. I studied wood cuts, I have interesting older stuff I did after I got out of the hospital. They are supposed to be all emotions, this is what I want to express.”
Gary is currently looking for opportunities to exhibit his work. Please contact us at Mental Spaghetti if you are interested.
Siris Hill is a self-taught artist whose creative practice is centred around Renaissance and Baroque inspired figurative painting. His work explores the effects of mental illness and other psychological conditions of the mind on an individual. Focusing on the struggle of perception, he depicts the beauty of individuality, but the strongest message is the struggle of trying to live. Siris is a digital fine artist, replicating the textures and movement of oil and acrylic paint.
“I’m Siris Hill. I’m 27. I have suffered from anxiety and depression since my late teens, and, have become somewhat agoraphobic due to the anxiety, which makes it difficult to network with other people. I sometimes find it difficult to share my work. This is caused by past rejection, anxiety about approaching people, and not feeling good enough.
I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease at birth. I practically lived in hospitals until the age of fifteen when I decided I was sick of them mistreating me. I stopped taking my medication, and have been physically healthy ever since, although I began getting anxiety attacks due to the trauma of my childhood.
I started painting 4 years ago, as a way to relax. Since then it has become a form of meditation for me. I am self-taught and my work portrays the raw feelings and emotions felt living with mental illnesses. It might be difficult for a person living without a mental illness to understand what it’s like for me – I often feel frustrated and isolated.
I love oil painting, but I’m unable to use it due to the fumes and certain materials triggering my anxiety. I taught myself to replicate techniques of Renaissance painters such as Rembrandt. Due to the advancements in technology I’m able to replicate traditional painting almost exactly, the only difference is drying times between layers.
I use a graphics tablet which tracks the movement of a pen that I hold to paint so my hand movements are then replicated on the screen. Other than that my process is almost exactly like Rembrandt’s, from what I’ve gathered through research at least. I build up a rough sketch to find a composition, fill in light and shadows, work in black and white to realise my forms and then glaze colours on top (although sometimes I work with colour straight away).
Painting is my way of expressing what I can’t talk about. My art may seem dark, but, I feel it reflects the reality other people like me live with day to day.”
To see more of Siris Hill’s work, please visit his website, www.sirishill.co.uk/, Instragram, and Facebook profiles. Siris recently exhibited with ten other artists living with mental ill health. Their self-curated show, Absence, can be viewed online, here.
“TAIESEID: A Multi-media and oft (accidentally) installation artist with a working practise on mental health, specifically with an autobiographical focus on anorexia and borderline personality disorder.
A recent Fine Art graduate from Liverpool School of Art and Design, I have just undertaken my first international residency at Arts, Letters & Numbers in New York, USA.
I am also a recovering anorexic and bulimic, and current sufferer of borderline personality disorder, anxiety and depression. I have spent large portions of my life in inpatient mental health facilities and my practise focuses on mental health and, mostly, anorexia.”
See more at http://taieseid.com.
ARTIST SEEKING EXHIBITION SPACE! READ ON…
“I created the installation ‘Heterotopia’, which focuses on anorexia and the in-between living. It is a sound and film interactive piece, which consists of a 3/5 sided space panelled with reflective silver materials and a ‘squishy floor’.
The film and audio is 9 minutes long, with a 5 min gap between rolls to allow people to explore the squishy floor become ‘comfortable’ before the piece starts. Size wise, it is perhaps the end of a room or even a corridor would work so long as the floor and back wall and ceiling could be completely covered and the two sides left blank for reflections.
Below are some stills from a recent showing of Heterotopia at the Tertium Quid exhibition at the Arts, Letters & Numbers Institute in NY. “
If any of you readers with a suitable space out there think Heterotopia might be appropriate for your programme, please contact Taieseid via her website.
Ana Pallares, born in Barcelona in 1993, is a self-taught artist, whose practice reflects on pain, death and other intangible realities which all too often occur with little reason.
Ana says, “I strive to find, and attach, new meanings to these realities, hoping to present them in a healthier, more manageable way – ultimately aiming to turn destructive feelings into constructive action.”
She also portrays characters that she is intellectually, emotionally or sexually attracted to. She has exhibited in Barcelona, Madrid and London, at The Hundred Years Gallery, The Brick Lane Gallery, Lacey Contemporary, Walton Fine Arts and the Illustrated Art Fair, 2016.
Ana’s first solo shows appeared in London last year, at The Hundred Years Gallery and Ziferblat. She has occasionally worked as an illustrator for digital culture magazines.
“TRAGICOMEDY” BY ANA PALLARES
In this online exhibition you will find a collection of works that Ana Pallares created between 2015 and 2016. The works were done using Posca markers and acrylic paints on paper or linen.
Universe with its galaxies.
Galaxies with their planets.
Planets with their countries.
Countries with their cities.
Cities with their humans.
Humans with their problems.
Problems with their causes.
Causes with their context.
Ana Pallares with all these stuff inside her head to she’s getting crazy because she has a universe on her mind.
See more from Ana at her Tumblr site, Instagram and Facebook profiles. If you would like to contact Ana, you can do so, here.
Images below from Ana Pallares solo show at The Hundred Years Gallery.
The Horsfall Micro Commissions 2017-18
Deadline Friday 5th May 2017
Applications are invited from artists and creative practitioners working in any art form for the 2017/18 Micro Commissions Programme with The Horsfall at 42nd Street.
The Micro Commission programme is a research and development opportunity for creative practitioners working across any art form. Designed to foster experimentation and innovation in creative practice within the realms of young people’s mental health and wellbeing, Micro Commissions enable practitioners to engage with an established mental health charity with its own creative programme and dedicated creative venue; The Horsfall.
We invite applications from creative practitioners from any discipline who wish to explore one of the following:
– The intersections of their practice with young people’s mental health and wellbeing.
– How the history of The Ancoats Art Museum or 87 Great Ancoats Street (the site of The Horsfall) can inspire and inform our arts and mental health practice at The Horsfall (resources are currently being curated into an online collection and can be supplied upon request).
– Ruskin/Horsfall’s vision for Useful and Beautiful art and how this can be reflected in arts and wellbeing work with young people at The Horsfall.
– The natural world in the urban environment and its relationship to young people and mental wellbeing.
You can download the full application guidelines PDF here: The Horsfall Micro Commissions Application Guidelines 2017
About 42nd Street
42nd Street is an innovative Greater Manchester mental health charity committed to supporting young people aged 11-25 years with their emotional well-being and mental health, promoting choice and creativity. With an excellent 35 year reputation, our unique holistic service model combines therapeutic psychological interventions with advocacy and social care. We reach 2000 young people each year via individual therapeutic support, projects and activities, leadership, peer research and a creative programme.
About The Horsfall
The Horsfall is a new venue and creative programme for Manchester, dedicated to improving young people’s mental health and wellbeing and the opening programme of projects, workshops and events will see artists, makers and heritage experts working with young people to reinterpret stories from the past, interrogate their own stories and to imagine new futures.
About the Micro Commissions
The Micro Commissions will be reserved for practitioners who are 35 years of age or under on 1st May 2017.
As this commission programme is conceived as a period of research, testing and experimentation, the only set public outcome is a presentation or sharing about your commission for an audience to be determined by The Horsfall team (including young people and the Creative Producer) and the commission holder.
As well as having access to one floor of The Horsfall for the equivalent of one week, commission holders will have access to 42nd St staff and their expertise in the field of young people and mental health.
It is not necessary for the applicant to consider or plan any direct delivery with young people during the commission period, although we do welcome applications that consider the involvement of young people in some way.
The Horsfall is based in central Manchester and easily accessible by public transport. The building consists of three floors and either the ground or first floors are potentially available for the commission. The ground floor is fully accessible.
There are two Micro Residencies in 2017 each lasting approximately one week. This can be a block of time or individual days taken over an extended period. Commission holders will receive:
– £500 expenses
– Workspace at The Horsfall
– Support from the Horsfall programme team (creative producer, engagement officer and communications officer)
– Access to support and information from mental health practitioners as necessary and where possible.
Chosen practitioners must have a current DBS at the time of taking up the micro commission. 42nd Street is able to assist in this process if necessary.
How to apply:
Please send the following:
– A one-page statement outlining your practice, your interest in the Commission, and how it will benefit one or more of the following:
– Your work
– Young people
– The Horsfall
– 42nd Street
– Your CV
– Supporting material – This must be in the form of a pdf containing up to 8 images and no larger than 10mb in size. You can include links to work online and your website within this document. If you want to include moving image/sound work in your application please include links to your work online.
There are two commission time slots. These will be confirmed by mutual agreement with the chosen candidates and will be between June 2017 and January 2018.
If you have any further questions about any aspect of the application please feel free to e-mail Julie.McCarthy@42ndstreet.org.uk. Please send applications by e-mail to Julie.McCarthy@42ndstreet.org.uk.
Selection Panels and Timescales
The Micro Commission panel is chaired by Julie McCarthy, Creative Producer for The Horsfall at 42nd Street. The rest of the panel is made up of:
– Two young people from the Creative Agents group at The Horsfall
– A representative from The Kim Lindfield Trust
The deadline for submissions is Friday 5th May at 12 midday.
Successful candidate will be notified by Friday 12th May.
This opportunity is open to creative practitioners working in any discipline at any stage of their
career. The commissions are reserved for practitioners aged 35 years or under on 1st May 2017.
Students in full time education are ineligible to apply.
We regret that we are unable to provide feedback on unsuccessful applications.
all words and artwork, ©Derek Collins. If you would like to get in touch with Derek, please email us.