Maho Kubota Gallery is pleased to present “liminal”, a solo exhibition by Yushi Suga, starting 26 May.
“Liminal” is a word that denotes “boundary” or “threshold,” and it has given rise to a meme called “liminal space” in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. This meme refers to a strange space that seems to move between reality and unreality. For instance, it can be observed in airports or train stations, which would typically be bustling with people, now empty and devoid of human presence. It can also be found in abandoned buildings that were once vibrant with human activity, or in underground hidden facilities that are difficult to access despite their existence. Imaginary spaces that imitate such places can also be considered as “liminal space.”
Throughout history, people have found beauty in vacant spaces, darkness, and ruins. Fascinated by this new meme that complements such aesthetics, Suga has focused on creating new works for this exhibition that depict uncertain and surreal scenes. Among the new works in the solo exhibition, Suga employs his signature technique of painting, which involves first polishing the surface to a mirror-like finish, applying monochromatic paint, and then scraping and painting to create the composition. Additionally, there are attempts to further evolve this approach by transferring the scraped-off paint to a separate space on the canvas. As the artist explores new works seeking the texture of inaccessible or non-existent elements, he also engages in the practical depiction of the word “liminal.” Furthermore, the exhibition showcases Suga’s pioneering endeavor to create virtual spaces using computer technology and depict worlds that do not actually exist.
In the year 2023, where generative AI rapidly becomes commonplace, what kind of tangible sensations can the imagination of human beings leave behind? One of the captivating aspects of contemporary art appreciation lies in the certain material discomfort felt when confronting the artwork. While unsettling the viewer’s perception, these works also exude a tranquil presence. We invite you to eagerly anticipate this collection of artworks that stir the viewers’ senses while resonating with a serene presence.