Yuichi Hirako / The Bark of Mind

26 APRIL - 31 MAY 2014
26 April 2014

Yuichi Hirako / The Bark of Mind




YUICHI HIRAKO (JP) / THE BARK OF MIND / 26.04.-31.05.2014

Galleri Christoffer Egelund proudly presents the second solo exhibition with the Japaneese artist Yuichi Hirako. At the exhibition The Bark of Mind we are presented to new drawings, sculptures and paintings. But across the different medias runs the same artistic vision: to investigate the relationship between man and nature.

Antrophomorphic creatures inhabit the sprouting scenes of Yuichi Hirakos paintings and for a while the rooms of Galleri Christoffer Egelund as well when the plant-like beings seem to have crawled from the canvases into the rooms as sculptures. The renaissance artist Giuseppe Arcimboldo painted fantastic portrait heads made out of flowers, vegetables or fruits. In Hirakos paintings it seems like these plant people have been attributed bodies to walk around in a fairytale-like universe. Animated brushwork and pulsating colouring forms a world where the boundaries between culture and nature, man and plant and indoors/outdoors are non-existent.

In the large painting Lost in Thought 3 the picture plane is divided into several fragments by a tree that embraces the entirety of the painting’s fictive universe. The paint runs down the bark like resin and mimics the natural deposition of material. Two vases containing stylised flowers are placed in the bottom right corner of the painting. Potted plants are of common occurrence in the art of Hirako as symbols of the controlled fragments of nature we bring into our homes or visit in our gardens and city parks.

In the art of Hirako it is not only nature and man that meet but also Western and Eastern notions. In Japan plants have earlier been given a godlike status, a phenomenon called Shinboku. In Western myths and fairy tales the wood and wild nature have been associated with quite other meanings; this is the habitat of witches, trolls and other horrific creatures. Hirako’s forests contain the holy and magical as well as the gloomy and threatening; this artist uses equally sized portions of light and dark colours.

Dwellings are another essential motif in the art of Hirako, whether portrayed as wooden cottages, fragmented views into interiors or glittering hedge castles like the one in the painting Luminous Plant 4. The usage of this motif helps the artist draw attention to the way we inhabit the world. A world where asphalting roads and tall buildings dominate our view and make it easy to forget that it is actually nature we are inhabiting. Hirako’s huts do not mark a strict division between the indoors and outdoors, city and nature, but rather exhibit a coherence between nature, plants and man-made objects as well as man himself. Through the art of Hirako we are presented to a curious universe which urges us to question our own relationship to nature.

Yuichi Hirako (b. 1982 in Okayama, Japan) graduated from Wimbledon College of Art in London in 2005. He now lives and works in Tokyo, Japan. Since his graduation he has exhibited at national as well as international venues including; The Museum of Modern Art (Gunma) in Japan, Museum of Contemporary Art in Tokyo, The Museum of Kyoto, Temporary Contemporary in London. He has received several art prizes from which could be mentioned VOCA 2013 (Vision of Contemporary Art), Tokyo Wonderwall Prize 2010 and Shell Art Award 2009.

Galleri Christoffer Egelund cordially invites you to the opening of Yuichi Hirako: The Bark of Mind on Friday the 25th of April 2014. The exhibition will run until May the 31st. Opening hours: Monday-Friday 11-18, Saturdays 12-16. For further information and press photographs please contact the gallery at: or at +45 33 93 92 00.