empty - Madonna and Child
Oil on postcard
My empty series is based on religious paintings, which is a subject of great interest to me, having encountered religious art works of different traditions in both Japan and Germany.
I feel that in the past, religious paintings fulfilled radical roles, but today they exist only in museum collections and are no longer effective for their original purpose. These paintings thus create a feeling of emptiness in viewers which is in contrast with the noble images depicted. By indicating the lack of connection felt by the viewer of such artworks through the removal of actual figures from the paintings, it is possible to discover the difference between the religious outlook of people today and people in the past. In doing so, we can return to the fundamental issue of what painting is.
The works are based on paintings that I saw at museums in Germany, painted in some cases on posters or postcards from the museums. By living in German cities, visiting museums, and devoting time to appreciating these paintings, I came to understand how they are seen and appreciated by curators and viewers. This understanding has informed my paintings, which show the contemporary face of these religious artworks.