Rieko Otake’s woodcarvings express such motifs as young girls, birds and deer, and even while her work looks at times somewhat delicate and unstable, one senses a unique strength in its universal presence replete with grace. The art critic Toshiaki Minemura has said of Otake’s work that while it “She seems to have dropped her anchor in the mystery of existence, the central issue of sculpture, with a precision that cannot be achieved through ordinary abstract sculpture.”
Otake consistently uses the wood of camphor, cypress, and katsura trees, working within a method of adding finishing touches to a foundation of non-coloured wood. Approaching closer the works, one becomes aware of an unexpected vigour to the chisel marks. She is affected by the importance of the rhythm of the repeated carving motions: a sincere process of exchange as if the tree and one’s breathing might become joined together, so that the artwork appears as story replete with lyricism. Otake remarks the following:
“An artwork is a place beyond imagination, but linked to what precedes it.
It is perhaps a way in; perhaps, a way out.”
— Rieko Otake
In this exhibition Otake will show about ten woodcarving works of varied sizes. We hope you will enjoy viewing a unique world, the creation of which is only possibly in Otake’s work: a world in which different domains become combined; a world of the ‘here’, or of the ‘somewhere’, or of the in-between.
Rieko Otake was born in 1978 in Kanagawa Prefecture. In 2004 she graduated from Tokyo University of the Arts’ Graduate School of Fine Arts, majoring in sculpture, and completed her PhD in 2007. She currently continues to live and work based in Kanagawa. Her works have been collected in the Takahashi and JAPIGOZZI Collections. As well as exhibiting in the show “As Long As Rainbow Lasts” (Soka Art Center, Taipei, 2011), she has also shown in a three-person exhibition at 8/ ART GALLERY/ Tomio Koyama Gallery with Hideaki Kawashima and Naoki Koide. This will be her fourth exhibition at Tomio Koyama Gallery, following on from “Tori-Tori” (2008), “Dreamlike” (2009), and “Perhaps, Mimi” (2012).