Makoto Saito: Portraits

10 May - 10 August 2014



Ticolat Tamura Ltd will exhibit a new body of work from Portrait series, inspired from movies and the artist Lucian Freud. These paintings refer back to Saito's childhood memory of seeing foreign films whose subtitles he could not follow, leading him to create his own story and imagined plot. Now, Saito extracts images and attempts to "witness how time difference is seen by expressing people of that time, using the current function of the mechanism". In this process, Saito uses a computer, striving to create the antithesis of a computer with the use of computer and paint. Saito experiments with material and content, placing no constraints upon

his creative process. Utilizing computer software to superimpose multiple layers of imagery, textured with oil, creating an effect of printed material.


Drawn to the harmony of dots found in printing, Saito creates this effect in his works by painting the dots that would appear in the printing process - viewing the works at a close range, the accumulation of dots is apparent, but as one moves further away the accumulation forms an image of the portraits of artist Lucien Freud, Brigitte Bardot and Marilyn Monroe. This ghostly blurring resembles the imprecise way that images

are stored and recalled from unconscious memory.


In his interview in the catalogue that accompanied Saito's exhibition at the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, the artist said, "I'm going to see things from my own angle, however distorted, and show occasional excerpts along the way. That might mean film clips, but what I'm really seeing are scenes steeped in human social interaction. As I said before, society today constitutes a single thread of digital and natural elements, and I can't tell which side I'm standing on, back or front. What I'm thinking now is, I would like to express not just the pretty surface of things, but also the internalized ugly parts as well."


Saito has been featured in solo shows at the Tomio Koyama Gallery, Tokyo, Japan, the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, Japan, the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg, Germany and at the Huntington Gallery, Massachusetts College of Art & Design, USA. Some of his group shows

include numerous exhibitions at the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum, Japan, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Centre Pompidou, Musée National d'Art Moderne in France and the Suntory Museum, Japan.