Unit London presents a group exhibition at Art Fair Tokyo 2023 (Booth S024), showcasing artists that are at the forefront of the contemporary art scene. The exhibition comprises new artworks from Esther Janssen, Heesoo Kim, Jason Boyd Kinsella, Ryan Hewett, Nihura Montiel and Etsu Egami.
Dutch artist, Esther Janssen, subverts familiar suburban scenes to create works that enchant and unsettle in equal measure. Conceived of artificial leather, which is painted, cut out and sewn together, these works represent lush yet strictly ordered neighbourhoods and gardens. They are devoid of people, but human presence is always suggested in the diligent cultivation of these perfected environments. Equally, Mexican artist Nihura Montiel deals with concepts of the uncanny, exploring themes of domesticity, privacy and femininity. Montiel creates photorealistic representations of everyday objects that could be considered banal or kitsch. Offering a re-examination of these objects, Montiel creates new narratives from the seemingly mundane. In the same sense, South Korean artist, Heesoo Kim, connects to what he defines as “expressions of the mundane” through portraiture. Kim’s portraits do not attach themselves to any specific sense of personhood, always allowing viewers to relate directly to each piece. Ultimately, through a recognition of banality, Kim encourages the viewer to search for shared meaning in the universal contemporary experience.
Equally, the exhibition spotlights artists who focus on a more abstract visual language. South African born Ryan Hewett has been inspired by Cubist portraits and Surrealist landscapes. Over the course of his career, he has honed a style that concentrates on deeply textured geometric expanses. Both Hewett’s portraits and landscapes evolve from the potential of abstraction, suggestive of more than just a simple representation, but the essence of a mood or sensation. Similarly geometric in style, Canadian artist Jason Boyd Kinsella’s portraits are concerned with the constituent parts of the human condition. Fascinated by our individual psychologies, Kinsella’s works reduce sitters to individual building blocks. The varying shapes and colours of each portrait interlock to convey the personality of each figure, creating architectonic yet deeply psychological portraits. Japanese artist, Etsu Egami, uses colourful abstraction to explore ideas of communication. Growing up in the United States and Europe, and currently living and working in China, Egami has experienced numerous language barriers. Feeling that languages can “only be sensed, not explained”, Egami’s works use a rainbow colour palette as a symbolic language to question the authenticity of communication.
Unit London’s diverse roster of artists encapsulates a breadth of talent from across the globe. The group exhibition for Art Fair Tokyo 2023 displays a series of unique visual languages, highlighting the varied artistic responses to our unique contemporary moment.
120 x 155 cm
Jason Boyd Kinsella
120 x 100 cm
100 x 100 cm
90 x 72 cm
Star time ーJean-Paul Satre
91 x 72.7 cm
61 x 46 cm
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