Create your first list.

A way to share and manage lots.

  • Condition Report

    Request Condition Report
  • Provenance

    Gallery Haku, Osaka
    Private Collection, Osaka
    Private Collection, Belgium
    Axel Vervoordt, Belgium
    Phillips, London, 9 February 2016, lot 28
    Acquired at the above sale by the present owner

  • Exhibited

    New York, Mnuchin Gallery, Kazuo Shiraga, 10 February - 11 April 2014
    Hong Kong, Axel Vervoordt, Kazuo Shiraga, 28 August - 15 November 2014

  • Catalogue Essay

    Kazuo Shiraga was one of the founders of the radical Gutai art movement, developed in 1954 in the wake of the Second World War in Japan. Gutai artists favoured freedom of expression and creativity above anything else, dismantling the regime of total conformity imposed during the war. For these artists, art was a playful medium that freed audiences from ideologies and social conventions. As the writer of the Gutai manifesto, Yoshihara Jiro’s dictum was: “Do what no one has done before!” (Yoshihara Jiro, quoted in 'Gutai Gurupu no 10 nen: Sono ichi' [10 years of the Gutai Group: Part One], Bijutsu January 38, March 1963, pp. 3-5). Shiraga epitomised Gutai’s spirit of playfulness: he completely rejected the traditional methods of painting with brushes, and sought more progressive ways to make art. Fastening a rope above the painting and grabbing firmly onto it, he glided across the canvas in vigorous movements, spreading thick mounds of paint with his feet on the surface. In doing so, Shiraga fully mastered the canvas by immersing himself physically into the work, eliminating both composition and consciousness from his work.

    Executed in 1986, Zuisouhen’s mesmerising dynamism and unrestrained energy is an outstanding example of Shiraga's persistent engagement with action painting as a powerful means of artistic expression. The dense strokes of paint convey a sculptural materiality and dimensionality, with the thick red pigments simultaneously creating beautiful abstract forms and foreboding allusions to spilt blood. Thick twirls of red, white, yellow and black converge in the middle of the canvas, maintaining their unique tonalities whilst in other parts of the composition these harmoniously dissolve into a single hue of colour.

    Zuisouhen’s Japanese title is 《 瑞相奕》, “zuiso” referring in Japanese Buddhism to an auspicious phenomenon that augurs an important event, for example according to legend the birth of Buddha was presaged by the blooming of flowers, the disappearing of insects from the palace, and the chirping of birds from the snowy mountains. Shiraga was particularly fascinated by the Matsuri festivals in Japan – Buddhist purification festivals intended to renew ties with divinities and nature, as well as bonds between individuals within a community. The festivals are pervaded by a frantic Dionysian energy, in which humans must appease and entertain the deities. Fascinated by the duality of beauty and destruction, Matsuri provided a primordial experience that allowed Shiraga to develop a form of art that straddled both worlds: “My art needs not just beauty, but something horrible. All of my works more or less express some sort of gruesomeness” (K. Shiraga, quoted in Body and Matter: The Art of Kazuo Shiraga and Satoru Hoshino, exh. cat., Dominique Levy Gallery, New York, 2015, p. 20). With the motifs of exhaustion and violence prevalent in the making of his art, Shiraga explained: “I want to paint as though rushing around on a battlefield, exerting myself to collapse from exhaustion” (quoted in Kazuo Shiraga: Six Decades, exh. cat., McCaffrey Fine Art, New York, 2009, p. 59).

    Shiraga’s startlingly passionate paintings and accompanying performances were groundbreaking milestones in the history of Japanese avant-garde art, and he continued his action paintings until his death in 2008. His pioneering techniques and philosophy paved the way for many European and American performance artists, such as Yves Klein (see for example his Anthropometries of the 1960s). The influential legacy of Shiraga and the Gutai group, not only in Japanese but also in post-war Western art history, have become increasingly recognized over the last few years, with the milestone exhibition Gutai: Splendid Playground held at the Guggenheim Museum in New York in 2013, and a Shiraga retrospective to be held at Tokyo Opera City Gallery in January 2020.

  • Catalogue Essay

    白髮一雄是具體派藝術運動的創始人之一,具體派於日本在第二次世界大戰過後的1954 年成立,崇尚表達和創意的自由,打破了戰爭時期的絕對服從性。對這些藝術家而言,藝術是一種可以把觀者從理念和社會常規中解放出來的趣味性媒介。吉原治良在具體派宣言中說過:「創造前所未有的事!」(吉原治良,錄於<具體藝術十年:第一部>,《Bijutsu January 38》,1963 年3 月,3-5 頁)白髮一雄的藝術就是具體派玩味精神的代表,他完全捨棄了傳統繪畫以筆為媒材的做法,追求藝術的革新,在畫布上方懸掛繩索,接著以手緊握繩索,以強而有力的動態在畫布上滑行,雙足塗抹厚實的顏料,身體力行,讓自己完全沉浸在作品中,不加考慮作品的構圖和意識。

    《瑞相奕》為1986 年作品,洋溢著動感和無疆的力量,彰顯白髮一雄心中動作繪畫的強大藝術表達力,濃厚的油彩具有雕塑般的質感和尺寸,厚重的紅色顏料既形成唯美的抽象造形,也如撕裂血液之象徵預示。旋轉扭曲的紅色、白色、黃色和黑色在畫面中央匯聚,既保持各自的色調,也在構圖其他部分融為一種和諧的顏色。作品以《瑞相奕》為題,瑞相是日本佛教裡「祥兆」的意思,預示重大事件即將發生。傳說佛陀誕生前便有茂盛花朵、皇宮裡昆蟲消失和雪山鳥鳴的預兆。白髮一雄對日本「祭」節日非常感興趣,那是佛教淨化靈魂的節日,是為了重建神與自然的關係,以及個人在社區裡的結合力。節日裡瀰漫著狂大之酒神式力量,人類必須要撫慰並娛樂眾神。「祭」充滿美與破壞的雙重性,其原始性的體驗讓白
    髮一雄得以發展出屹立於這兩個世界的藝術形式:「我的藝術不止要美的,也要可懼的。我所有的作品都在某種程度上表達了可怕陰森之氣。」(白髮一雄之言,錄於《身體與物質: 白髮一雄與星野悟的藝術》展覽圖錄,Dominique Levy 畫
    廊,紐約,2015 年,第20 頁)白髮一雄的藝術創作總不乏枯竭和暴力題材,他解釋道:「我希望繪畫是像在戰壕中奔跑一般,耗盡最後一絲力量而垮掉。」(錄於《白髮一雄:六十年》展覽圖錄,McCaffrey藝術畫廊,紐約,2009 年,59 頁)

    白髮一雄的繪畫富有激情,更連同身體動作,在日本前衛藝術史上開創了新的一章,他不斷創造動作繪畫,直到在2008 年去世為止。其革新的技術和思想更啟發了許多歐美行為藝術家,包括伊夫·克萊因(見其1960 年代的《人體測量》創作)。近年,白髮一雄與其他具體派藝術家的影響力不僅在日本得到肯定,更在西方戰後時期藝術史上佔有一席。2013年,紐約古根漢博物館舉辦「具體派: 燦爛遊樂場」重要展覽,而2020 年1 月東京 Opera City Gallery 也將進行白髮一雄回顧展。

Select Language





signed, titled and dated '"Zuisouhen" [in Kanji and Japanese] 1986 June [In Japanese] (61st year of Showa Era) Shiraga Kazuo [in Kanji]' on the reverse
oil on canvas
130 x 160 cm. (51 1/8 x 62 7/8 in.)
Painted in 1986.

HK$8,000,000 - 12,000,000 

Place Advance Bid
Contact Specialist
Charlotte Raybaud
Head of Evening Sale, 20th Century & Contemporary Art

20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale

Hong Kong Auction 24 November 2019