Today's Happy Colors!, 2013
Paint tube, wood and PET
16 1/8 x 16 1/8 x 14 1/8 in (41 x 41 x 36 cm) each
Set of 8
Edition of 10
Be Ready to Run, 2017
Ink, cans and PET
16 1/2 x 16 1/2 x 11 3/4 in (42 x 42 x 30 cm) each
Edition of 5
Super Egg, 2017
Shell, wood resin and PET
13 3/4 x 13 3/4 x 13 in (35 x 35 x 33 cm)
Edition of 30
BLANK SPACE is pleased to present an exhibition of representative works by Yuki Matsueda, a Japanese artist known for his multi planar wall sculptures. The exhibition presents the charming disposition of ordinary objects, and examines the blurring relationship between art and design. Super Ordinary will be the artist’s first solo show in New York, and will continue through November 19 with an opening reception on Thursday, September 21 from 6pm to 8pm.
Matsueda’s sculptures portray objects springing out from its original state, as if to capture a moment frozen in time. Growing up as the son of print shop owners, Yuki Matsueda had early exposure to prints, and went on to study art and design. Having always had a playful personality, he sought to break the rigid structures of academic art, and find amusement in banalities of everyday life. Through his art of liberating ordinary objects from boredom, and integrating witty humor in it, the artist hopes to break the barrier between fine art and design, and believes small change can create big amusement.
A serendipitous discovery in his formative years, Yuki Matsueda compares his unique technique to cooking. Each component- the print, shaped PET, object and frame, is prepared mise en place, or set up, before the artist assembles the pieces together to complete the work.
The egg in Matsueda’s Super Egg series is symbolic as the artist considers eggs as his main source of energy that makes him feel full and happy. Easily overlooked as an everyday breakfast food, he wished to express the vitality of the egg by having the yolk break out of its hard shell. He continues his witty twists in the Be Ready to Run series. Matsueda re-interprets Andy Warhol’s famous Campbell soup prints by portraying the bare tin can shoot out from its sticker label. Each can holds a pleasant surprise- an egg hidden inside to represent the energy that powers the flight.
Through Today’s Happy Colors series, Matsueda shows the origins of creativity. “Applying color with a brush— it is a very simple act, but is one that will create marvelous paintings and eventually define the artist’s creative process.” In a series of eight color panels and a brush, the artist shows the unity of his color palette with one continuous brushstroke. In the Exit series, the artist sees exit signs as guides for people in the direction of safety during state of emergencies, but emergency for the neon green man in the exit sign seemed to be wanting to escape the two-dimensional confinement. Matsueda brings the green figure out into the viewer’s space, resolving that this is the only way to save him.
Yuki Matsueda (b. 1980) was born in Ibaraki province in Japan and received a Ph.D. in Design at Tokyo University of Arts. He has held solo exhibitions in Hong Kong, Seoul, Berlin, and Tokyo and participated in group shows and art fairs in Miami, Shanghai, Beijing, Los Angeles, Kyoto, and Paris.