Ryosuke Kumakura: towels, socks, cats, windows
On view: January 12 - February 17, 2024
Reception: Friday, February 2, 5:00–8:00 pm
Ryosuke Kumakura’s towels, socks, cats, windows considers some of the textures of life that are the most familiar. In this grouping of new and existing paintings, Kumakura meditates on the details and richness of everyday life and celebrates the familiar materials found in interior spaces.
A step beyond still life, Kumakura incorporates the physicality of the canvas and the stretcher into his composition. Melding the space between the gallery setting and the studio or home, Kumakura “hangs” towel paintings over a stretcher as towels would hang over a rack in a bathroom, flips the corners of canvas edges to suggest folds in a cat’s ears, frames window paintings as if looking out into the night-time landscape, and positions socks as they had been rolled off one’s feet onto the floor, coming home after a long day. By shortening the distance between the public and the private, Kumakura’s intimate, and yet playful, paintings serve as a respite from the whirlwinds of change.
Born and raised in Niigata, Japan (now based in Maine) Ryosuke Kumakura’s conceptual painting practice examines the ways we organize our surroundings and lives. Each intimate work is an observational meditation on the essence within everyday objects and the patina of daily life. Through his acute attention to an object’s textural, tactile quality, Kumakura teases and blurs the boundaries between object and canvas as well as painting and viewer. Each work he creates is rendered with a tender precision capturing the stains on the t-shirt of a past lover, the hole in the sole of a worn sock, or the frayed edge on a bathroom towel. These imperfections gesture towards the true spirit of a thing, not only holding the existence of those who have used and loved the objects but also giving the painting an essence in and of itself.