Tezukayama Gallery is delighted to present Tomohiro Kato’s solo exhibition “ Life is steel full!“.
Tomohiro Kato was born in Tokyo in 1981 and completed an MA course from the Tama Art University, after completing of the course, he started a career as an artist whilst working at a metal processing company in order to improve his skill working with metals. He is keen to use steel on his projects, constantly looking to challenge the perceptions and also to find new potential while working with this material.
Kato creates unconventional works revolving around steel. Either by framing a steel canvas or creating sculptures that mimic mass-produced items such as a light bulb or a paintbrush, steel is his material of choice. He also dabs in performing arts, wearing a steel-made tie with a business suit whilst traveling unconcernedly on a rush-hour train in Tokyo, or posting a steel-made postcard to any buyer of his work, it’s simply stamped and sent by mail. All his works showcase “steel” and what it means for him as he sharply puts up a question to us about “material” or “material and society”.
In his first solo exhibition at Tezukayama gallery, Tomohiro Kato will try to recreate a quintessential part of Japanese traditional culture, the tea ceremony.
Since witnessing the terrible Tohoku earthquake and its impact on society, Kato has become more conscious of Japan where he is from. The devastating earthquake actually brought back a new interest in traditional culture for Kato as he went back to study metalwork at the university that he deliberately kept away from after graduating.
In this exhibition, Kato will build a steel-made tea room at the gallery space including, “tokonoma (alcove), kakejiku (hanging scroll), a tea-set, and even flower arrangements, all made of steel. All tea sets and furniture items in a tea-room are traditional crafts and make up the essential elements for a traditional tea-room. During the tea ceremony, the tea room is a condensed universal spiral and a moment there should be perpetuity.
The title of the exhibition “Life is stressful” literally comes from Kato’s life around steel, but also tries to give the audience an understanding of the exhibition. Picture yourself in a tea room where all the soil, trees, and bamboo are replaced by steel. A view into the future perhaps? At the opening reception on the 26th of May, we will throw a tea party using a steel tea set by Kato. Looking forward to seeing you at Tezukayama Gallery!