Yuichiro Sato, The Forest – between reality and the imaginary
Early Spring 春景
Pigment, ink, acrylic on paper, mounted on wooden panel
15.6.–8.9.2019 Art Museum Gallery
Three years have passed since I came to Finland. The light, and the interweave of waters and forests captivated me and continue to fascinate me. In Japan I thought a lot about the power of nature and I tried to express its limitless strength in abstract images. I was looking for new ways of expression using metal, textiles and oxidants along side traditional Japanese painting mediums. But my experience of Finnish nature gave me new inspiration and completely changed me. This unknown land showed me that when you look closely at a familiar environment, an uncountable number of miniature worlds appear. Hidden in the trunk of a birch tree, the vitality and traces left from the seasons are incredibly beautiful and fill me with vigour. I got lost in drawing the trees and the landscapes within them just as they are, just as I feel them.
Whenever I meet up with friends from Japan, they always ask me all kinds of questions. They often ask about Finland and the images I am making here. But there are also people who, half jokingly, ask if I have seen gnomes or real Moomins. I answer that I have not, but I always add that it might be because I have not looked carefully enough. In Finland I often feel like fairies and spirits might really be right around the corner. Outside my window are the colours of the sky, a ray of light piercing through the forest, the jade-green of moss and ferns: I am continuously surprised and spellbound. When my astonishment subsides, I am filled with a quite gratitude, that this landscape is here, and that I am able to live in the middle of it.
A golden coloured forest floats above the lake beyond a mist – I hope that I can continue to draw the landscapes of this place that seems to sit on the edge of reality.
This exhibition strives to express my feelings of reverence when I stand before an old tree: Feelings of fear and respect inspired by nature, and the gratitude that life is in harmony with nature.
- Yuichiro Sato
Yuichiro Sato (1979) is a Japanese painter who came to work in the Järvilinna artist residence in the year 2016. He had planned to stay for a year but Finland fascinated him more than he could imagine. He has continued working in Vihtavuori, Laukaa in the Taidekeskus Järvilinna, which is situated 15 km away from Jyväskylä. The large works are made by using pencil, coal and graphite pigment. They depict Finnish landscapes. The exhibition contains works from 2018–2019. The newest triptych was made for this exhibition.