Following his collaboration with sacai and Schott, the acclaimed Japanese-American artist MADSAKI will be heading up a new solo exhibition at Takashi Murakami’s Kaikai Kiki Gallery this October. Entitled “Island Love,” the presentation will spotlight paintings containing vivid scenes of his adopted hometown in the Big Island of Hawai’i. The artist has consistently traveled to the Big Island for vacation in the past two years, but wasn’t able to go back due to personal reasons and while the world is still reeling from the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The artist hesitated to travel on his own knowing his family wouldn’t be able to join due to various reasons, but his wife insisted. She knew that MADSAKI had always spent time in the Big Island emptying his mind and regaining himself in order to return to and focus on his production; it always had a significant impact on MADSAKI’s mentality. And so he headed alone to the Big Island for the first time in a long while,” said the gallery in a statement.
In August 2021, the artist finally traveled back to the Big Island and stayed with his longtime friend Nick who has lived on the neighborhood of Hilo for over 30 years. The title of this exhibition references the time when Nick and MADSAKI were driving home from the beach and a local radio station played “Island Love” by The Peter Moon Band. “It led to a moment of felicity that they both cheered and enjoyed,” said the gallery.
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“Every morning I woke up early and drove out with Nick to enjoy the empty beach, and around noon, when more people started to arrive, we would go back to the house for lunch together and have a smoke,” said the artist in a statement. “After working in the yard in the afternoon covered in dirt and sweat, I would head back to the beach again to spend the evening relaxing in the ocean until the sun went down. By repeating this cycle back and forth between this home and the ocean, my mind gradually emptied and reset. I felt happy just to get up in the morning and sit down, and I was absolutely satisfied just to be alive.”
Altogether “Island Love” is the artist’s visual exploration of physical and spiritual healing. The exhibition will allow visitors to experience these intimate moments in the artist’s life where he regained the confidence and energy to paint. “Being in Hilo suits me the best; there, I can be my true self. I feel closer to the true nature of mankind, a feeling I cannot have when living in Tokyo. I know that. Yet when I am on the Big Island, I am spiritually fulfilled, so I don’t feel the need to paint. It is being in Tokyo that my yearning for Hawai’i urges me to paint.”
Head to Kaikai Kiki Gallery’s website for more information on “Island Love.” Taking place at the gallery’s Tokyo flagship, the exhibition will commence on October 28 and will be open to the public until November 26, 2022.
Elsewhere in art, London-based creative studio Increments recently unveiled its ‘Tundra’ interactive light installation.
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