"Foil" Exhibition

hpgrp gallery

poster for "Foil" Exhibition

This event has ended.

In the United States, there are a myriad of book publishers such as Phaidon and Taschen, and innumerable underground-culture publications such as Interview, Nylon and Bomb Magazine. But in Japan, there is only Foil, an independent gallery and art book publishing company that produces over fifty publications every year, including exhibition catalogs and a magazine. Focusing on both emerging artists and photographers, as well as international art superstars such as Ron Mueck, Terry Richardson and Yoshitomo Nara, Foil has become eponymous with cultural sophistication in Japan. hpgrp gallery NY in Chelsea is pleased to present a collaborative exhibition with Foil in Tokyo that will feature the works of four photographers: Rinko Kawauchi, Syoin Kajii, Yoichi Nagano and Eye Ohashi.

Established in 2004, Foil started as a photography magazine that consisted solely of visual content devoid of advertising, logos, or explanatory text. Known for discovering new artists, and introducing them to the international art market, Foil eventually opened a gallery based in Tokyo that continues to represent and exhibit the work of Japanese artists such as Rinko Kawauchi, Yoichi Nagano and Hiroko Inoue, as well as international rising stars such as Jodie Vincenta Jacobson. Recently, Foil has begun collaborating with art world icons such as Japanese painter Yoshitomo Nara, and the Switzerland-based conceptual art duo Peter Fischli and David Weiss, to produce comprehensive catalogs of their work. As the reach of their coverage extends internationally, their prestige in the art world continues to grow.

Rinko Kawauchi was born in 1972 in Shiga, Japan. After being educated at the Seian University of Art and Design, Kawauchi started a career in advertising, but soon began to exhibit her fine art photographs internationally at galleries and museums in New York, Los Angeles, Brussels, Rome, London, Saõ Paulo, and Tokyo. Her style is simple and poetic, focusing on the tender, small details of every day life—a cracked egg, a young child’s face, a dead bee on a windowsill. Her works at the hpgrp gallery NY exhibition—which include images of shattered glass inexplicably left on a wooden floor, a crow sitting on a man’s knee on a park bench, and a cluster of orange fish eyes arranged like soap bubbles on a white background—expose the darker undercurrent of death that runs beneath the surface of life.

Syoin Kajii was born in 1976 in Niigata, Japan, and graduated from Koyasan University in Mikkyo with a degree in Esoteric Buddhism. While serving as a monk of the Singon Sect in Sado Island, Kajii began taking photographs, a practice that led him to receive the 1st Foil Award in 2004, which was followed by the Rookie of the Year award from the Photographic Society of Japan in 2005. His work has been exhibited in Japan, Korea, the Netherlands and Switzerland, amongst other locations, and has been the subject of three monographs printed by Foil. His pieces at the hpgrp gallery NY exhibition will focus his iconic images of water, both grandiose—in the form of waves crashing against the sea barriers of a town—and minute—a drop of water set against the fading sun, a school of goldfish underneath placid green pond, a cracked reed floating on the surface of a lake—exposing the tension between power and delicacy that upholds the surface tension in water, and on a larger scale, in human existence.

Yoichi Nagano was born in 1968 in Fukuoka, Japan, and was educated at Tama University. His photographs, which are color-infused, examine the lives of the inhabitants of the Japanese Islands, and have exhibited widely in cities such as Tokyo, Berlin and Shanxi. His series “Breath,” which will be featured at the Foil exhibition in New York, shows images of people of all ages, both men and women, holding their breath underneath water. The figures he depicts dangle loosely in the liquid void, sometimes with their faces raised towards the surface water, and at other times looking placidly and calmly at the lens of the camera.

Eye Ohashi was born in 1974 in Kanagawa, Japan, and graduated from Tokyo College of Photography in 1995. She is best known for her soap bubble compositions, which she creates by releasing bubbles into the air, and then taking photographs of various landscapes through them, thereby capturing the strange, dream-like world that is reflected through the refractions of light. A newcomer to Foil, the gallery published a monograph of her work to accompany a solo exhibition, Unchained, in 2008.



from March 24, 2011 to April 23, 2011

Opening Reception on 2011-03-24 from 18:00 to 20:00

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