【Gallery】SOUVENIRS DE TOKYO Exhibition
Tokyo based artist-duo K-NARF & SHOKO transform the Super-Ordinary of the everyday life into an Extra-Ordinary visual archive for the future. Based on the Tape-o-graph processing method K-NARF invented more than 10 years ago and directly affiliated to the Bricolage Art Movement, the artists play with photography and time, to create a unique world halfway between imaginary and reality, past and future. Processing photos with adhesive tape and creating large scale installations made of ordinary tools and materials mostly sourced in ¥100 stores, DIY or office supply shops, their work generates an innovative neo-analog approach to photography. As independent artists, they self-produce and self-represent all their projects, and their work has been extensively exhibited in Japan and overseas.
The duo will be exhibiting "SOUVENIRS DE TOKYO” at THE KNOT TOKYO Shinjuku, just a few blocks away from their studio. This exhibition combines three different series of works including the “HATARAKIMONO PROJECT”, “PRE-SUMMER RESEARCHES & STUDIES” and “HANGI FOREVER”. Each expose the beauty of Tokyo through the artists’ eyes; the ordinary beauty of daily life that is often overlooked.
For this exhibition, the artists selected artworks that could be considered as SOUVENIRS OF TOKYO to be taken back home by hotel guests.
“HATARAKIMONO PROJECT”, is an art project consisting of more than 100 portraits of Japanese workers that took the artist duo more than two years to complete. The Japanese word “hatarakimono” positively and respectfully describes someone who is considered to be a hard-worker. A man or woman who enjoys doing their job, whatever it is, without pretention. Many workers portrayed in this project are from the neighborhood of the artists’ studio (adjacent to THE KNOT) including local firemen.
“PRE-SUMMER RESEARCHES & STUDIES”
“PRE-SUMMER RESEARCHES & STUDIES”, is a series of flowers photographed nearby the artists’ studio in Shibuya and Shinjuku, during one week when the sakura are blooming. K-NARF & SHOKO documented this stunning time of the year when nature transforms Tokyo in just a few days. The famous sakura of course, but also other blossoms that we do not even know the names of. These flowers bring the news of the departure of winter and the excitement of the arrival of the presummertime.
“HANGI FOREVER”, is a series of tape-o-graphic studies of printer’s woodblocks from the 60's (or before) called HANGI, that the artists found at their favorite Japanese antique shop in Tokyo. These printing tools were all carved by hand and were used for advertisements based on people’s daily lives: you could find logos of sake makers, an invitation for a fashion shop’s opening or even a copy of winter sales. In this series of work, the artists play with time by using a contemporary photographic technique (Tape-o-graphy) to preserve for the future a once very common artisan craft, which is now extremely rare.
Come and join us on January 9th, 2020 for the "SOUVENIRS DE TOKYO” opening reception and discover the playful approach to photography created by artist-duo K-NARF and SHOKO