Los Angeles based artist Edwin Ushiro, who hails from Hawaii originally, has become recognized for his nostalgic multimedia works inspired by his childhood memories. In his previous showing at Giant Robot’s GR2 Gallery in Los Angeles, “Gathering Whispers”, Ushiro reflected on his earlier years spent on the island of Maui. Those works presented a romanticized version of the island, where children played with spirits in lush green environments. It also marked an exploration into new media, particularly paintings on plexiglass. For his next exhibition with the gallery, “The Study of Life as Things”, which opens this Saturday, Ushiro looks back on his youth in more traditional “studies”.
The characters in Yoskay Yamamoto’s paintings are often portrayed submerged in water. With eyes half-closed and a serene expression on their faces, they seem at peace in the cool blue seas painted from the artist’s dreams. The concept of being submerged, for Yamamoto, represents his place between cultures as a Japanese artist living in America. His ocean possesses a strong physical and emotional power because of this. It’s waters contain new elements in his latest series of 12 paintings, debuting on Friday at the Honolulu Museum of Art’s Contempo #ArtShop, curated by Giant Robot.
Andrew Hem (HF Vol. 21 cover artist) makes his curatorial debut tomorrow with “Ill Squad!”, a group exhibition of his fellow artists at Giant Robot gallery. Throughout his career, Hem has shed a light on his favorite artists in another way, in his lush and colorful paintings. Among his subjects are those who inspire him creatively, which he portrays either at work in their studio or on some fantastical adventure. At his solo exhibition last year, “Dream but Don’t Sleep” (covered here), Hem shared with us his ongoing enthusiasm for garnering a public interest in his friends’ work. Nearly all of the artists in his “squad” stem from an illustration background, but together their works are eclectic and showcase a variety of media.
Tomorrow, Giant Robot’s GR2 gallery will introduce seven like-minded artists with a shared vision of fantasy and spiritual worlds. “Wavelengths” artists Stasia Burrington, Elliot Brown, Aaron Brown, Albert Reyes, Aya Kakeda, Jen Tong and Taehoon Kim are just as eclectic in their media choices, especially sculpture. Each artist tells a vignette featuring their signature styles with Japanese art undertones.
GR2 recently celebrated the return of Japanese comics artist Katsuya Terada’s ‘Hot Pot Girls’. Aptly titled “Return of the Hot Pot Girls” (previewed here) his exhibition is an original series of girls wearing Japanese cooking pots, drawn in striking detail. At a live drawing event on Sunday, Terada shared his undeniable connection to French artist Moebius– “It’s impossible to keep away from what you like and enjoy.”
Opening tomorrow, Giant Robot’s GR2 brings back the pot-adorned girls of Japanese artist Katsuya Terada with “Return of the Hot Pot Girls.” We originally covered his intricate black and white marker drawings back in 2011. A skilled draftsman, Terada is perhaps best known in the States for his character designs for the animated film Blood: The Last Vampire, Iron Man and Hellboy. His new pieces contrast simple materials of pencil on paper and wood with detailed renderings of girls wearing Japanese “nabe” (Japanese hot pot dishes) paired with ferocious beasts. Creatures like tigers, bears, and eagles appear mid-flight as they wind around the compostions, shown here in these cropped preview images.