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Preview: “Belle” Junko Mizuno Retrospective at Atomica Gallery

Demonic goddesses and amorphous love children dominate the compositions by Japanese-born, San Francisco-based artist Junko Mizuno (featured on the cover of HF Vol. 23). Mizuno has an expansive oeuvre, which spans such media as graphic novels and television animation. Her original paintings, in addition to wood, giclee and silkscreen prints, will for the first time be seen in London during the artist’s retrospective, "Belle: The Art of Junko Mizuno," opening October 20 at Atomica Gallery.

Demonic goddesses and amorphous love children dominate the compositions by Japanese-born, San Francisco-based artist Junko Mizuno (featured on the cover of HF Vol. 23). Mizuno has an expansive oeuvre, which spans such media as graphic novels and television animation. Her original paintings, in addition to wood, giclee and silkscreen prints, will for the first time be seen in London during the artist’s retrospective, “Belle: The Art of Junko Mizuno,” opening October 20 at Atomica Gallery.

The bare-breasted women in her paintings exude both erotic passion and innocent charm. The figures are intoxicating for their antinomy, such as Jungle Queen, who gleefully bats her eyelashes while holding steadfast to a heart-staked spear. Nurse has big blue eyes and wears pink gloves, but her soft touches contrast greatly with Hells Angels-esque tattoos covering her arms and a skull and cross bones emblem displayed on her nurse’s cap. The two angelic characters flanking her breasts could not possibly be saviors, but must instead be conspirators to the wicked woman’s plan. One can only imagine what might be in store for the creature contained within the nurse’s needle.

“Belle: The Art of Junko Mizuno” will be on view for one week only, October 20 through 28, at Atomica Gallery in London.

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