Profile

IMG_4175

brief profile

Born 1982 in Sapporo City, Hokkaido, Japan. Lives and works in Manila, Philippines and Japan. Atsuko Yamagata has started her career as a visual artist since 2006 when she lived in Tokyo. She moved to Philippines in 2012 and her activities have expanded more and more in the art scene in Manila. She has been participating in numerous exhibitions mainly in Philippines , also in Japan, Indonesia and Singapore.


Yamagata is basically self-taught artist. She received B.A. Faculty of Foreign Studies in Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, especially she majored in Indonesian language as a part of cultural study of Southeast Asia.  After years, she entered Musashino Art University in Tokyo to study fine arts , and took some courses for a year  and dropped out. 


In recent years, she had many solo exhibitions and joined remarkable group exhibitions such as :  in 2021, "attachment | distance" and in 2020, “Do you hear it?” both at Artinformal Gallery. In 2019 two women exhibition with Mervy Pueblo “Transcendental” at Cultural Center of the Philippines.  In 2018 ,”Remembrance” at Vinyl on Vinyl gallery,  “Uncontrolled Artificiality” at Finale Art File,  “Born Softly” at MO_Space, “Belongingness” at West Gallery. She had an another solo exhibition in her hometown Sapporo City in 2017, “made roots here” at  Hotel Nikko Sapporo. Also she was selected as a participant artist in Nakanojo Biennale 2017 and 2019 in Gunma Prefecture(Japan) ,  and did residence there to make artworks for the biennale. 


Exhibition Note by Gwen Bautista for the show "Lovable Adorable Cells" 2022 January, Galerie Stephanie

Atsuko Yamagata’s “Lovable Adorable Cells” explores the understanding of life, human emotions, and all that it encompasses through the investigation of images drawn from microscopic cells. Here, the organisms become representations of sentiments as they are gathered together in a commune-like ensemble. Through painting, the artist engages a process that emphasizes the characteristics of every image and cell as it becomes a representation of universal emotions. Since the pandemic, Yamagata yearns to describe the invisible life present in the world through restaging the deepest and smallest biological units inside our bodies. Every cell that occupies our body contributes to the way we relate to ourselves and the society. In her art-making, Yamagata continues her process of allowing the flow of glue to organically dictate the shape and form in her work as natural elements such as air and water intervene. This manner allows uncontrolled elements in the composition, thus, these imperfections constitute the genuine bearings that make us all human —lovable, adorable, and yet complicated cells inside a body. Hence, we come to acknowledge even the nuisances of living.

In portraying these images, Yamagata points out the equality and universality of emotions as well as the cells that make our body: both looking indiscriminately into race, gender, and socio-economic status. If we really want to make sense of life, then, we simply respect it in all its forms. Another aspect of these works is the presence of flamboyance meticulously rendered in the details tended to every depiction of the cell. At times, they may look the same but they each carry individual characteristics that make each form and color stand out from each other. This is parallel to the way people would navigate themselves in their own society for each may function as an individual, important in the sense of independence, yet purposefully part of a larger scope just as a cell becomes a tissue, a muscle, a body, and a person.

 curated by Gwen Bautista

Artist Statement

Painting transmutes forms and shapes into living creatures that articulate ideas drawn from animism, biogenesis or structure of living organisms, which are dominant influences in my works.

I explore understanding the particularities of life or its relativity with human emotion through scientific images such as microscopic images of cells and microorganisms. 

In my art-making process, the flow of glue organically dictates the shape and form of fragments in my works as I submit my mastery of the skill in allowing natural elements such as air and water to intervene and to begin the composition of the work. I select and decide the colors to be used, which in turn define these representations. 

As in the process of dyeing handmade papers, I can plan the streaks but cannot control the result ; hence, they become perfectly imperfect.

The element of uncontrollability is regarded as an important part in my art-making.

Introduced On Galleries Site

美術作家

山形敦子

1982年北海道、札幌市生まれ、フィリピン・マニラと群馬県を拠点に活動する。

2012年よりマニラで活動を始め、主にフィリピンにて個展やグループ展に参加している。

近年の代表的な展示に、2021年群馬県高崎市のビエントアーツギャラリーにて「かわいい かわいい 細胞たち」、2021年Artinformal Gallery(フィリピン) での”attachment | distance”、2020年同じくArtinformal Gallery での”Do you hear it?” , 2019年Cultural Center of the Philippines(フィリピン文化センター) にてMervy Puebloとの二人展である”Transcendental”, 2018年Finale Art File(フィリピン)にて”Uncontrolled Artificiality”, Vinyl on Vinyl galleryでの”Remembrance”等。

また、フィリピン以外の東南アジア各地(シンガポール、インドネシア、マレーシア)でもグループ展やアートフェアへの出展等活動の場を広げる。

日本での展示は、2021年群馬県高崎市ビエントアーツギャラリーのほか、2017年に札幌市のJRタワーホテル日航札幌にて個展を開催した。

2017,2019と群馬県で開催の中之条ビエンナーレに参加。滞在制作を行う。

アーティストステートメント

私はアニミズムや生物の発生プロセス・微生物や植物の構造から着想を得て制作している。

細胞や微生物の顕微鏡像のような表現を通じて、生命の特殊性・繋がり合い、人間の感情との関連性を模索している。

その方法として、制作の過程で起こる、素材による自発的な動きを重要視している。

例えば接着剤で作品のパーツを作る時、私は使用する色を選択し、ある程度の形を決めるところまではするが、その先は私自身が最終的な形をコントロールすることはできない。接着剤と絵の具が起こす化学反応に、空気や水などの自然の要素が介入し、結果有機的な形が作られる。自然物の介入という要素は、作品制作の上で重要な部分と捉えている。

Exhibitions

Recent exhibitions : 

1.11. 2022 – 1. 25. 2022

“Lovable Adorable Cells”

Galerie Stephanie, Mandaluyong City, Philippines

Contact Me