Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Tetsuya Ishida

Monkey and Seal recently had the incredible pleasure of discovering the work of Tetsuya Ishida, a contemporary Japanese painter. The store that Seal works at recently started carrying a collection of his work and when she showed Monkey, he was literally speechless.

His work is hauntingly beautiful, commenting on modern Japanese life. His topics range from the life of a salaryman to consumption to alienation and loneliness. Each painting was a self-portrait of the artist in the thick of it. He recently died in April from a train accident which is suspected to be a suicide.

Truly a great talent that will be missed, Monkey feels like this collection of work by Tetsuya-san is super inspiring and invaluable to the Monkey and Seal library.

Tetsuya does what Monkey ultimately wants to do with his art. By combining social commentary, politics, creepiness, and magical realism, Tetsuya says something deeply profound that resonates with one's soul and stays with you.

While Monkey's work currently explores the same themes but with a more humorous bent while using the interplay between text and images, he wants to eventually create something as moving and powerful as Tetsuya.

Monkey and Seal both highly recommend checking out more of Tetsuya's work - it is a simply stunning collection that finds beauty in the horrors of contemporary Japanese life.

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