Invisible Strings in Spring
04.08 — 05.19.18

Devening Projects invites you to the opening of Invisible Strings in Spring, a show of recent paintings and drawings by Shunsuke Imai, Soshi Matsunobe and Ryota Nojima. The exhibition opens on Sunday, April 8th from 4 – 7 pm and continues until May, 19th. We’re very excited to present this new work from Japan; the exhibition is in cooperation with Hagiwara Projects in Tokyo.

Using folded and distorted printed images built from stripe patterns created on his computer, Shunsuke Imai creates paintings that hover between volumetric fictions and the graphic clarity of Modernism. His paintings reflect a strange ambiguity as the viewer shifts from the illusion of three-dimensional modeling and the concrete physicality of the surface, shape and color. Focus sharpens as one moves both into and across the terrain of these optically charged contours within  carefully balance compositions. Edge, negative space and hue are used to keep the space active and the eye engaged. Dexterously shifting attention between flatness and dimensionality, Imai makes paintings that are never static or settled; instead, they reflect the same charged and stimulating visual urban experience of Tokyo where he lives and works.

Soshi Matsunobe’s work, though minimal in approach and form, continually activates the viewer’s sensation of material and space. His work is carefully focused on medium, process, technique and a set of parameters and rules that govern each work. He uses these conditions to identify and form the core elements that exist and define our daily activities and ultimately our lives. By accepting, rejecting, dissecting, and reassembling these conditions, he challenges our cognitive and intellectual process and conjures new questions about what one sees in the work presented. In the piece Appear on Disappear Drawing (Disappear on Appear Drawing), he makes drawings with diagonal lines using the same action one might use to erase. The process of marking as erasing and vice versa, reveals a work of tonal complexity that is in one sense a rich atmospheric field and in another, a tightly woven structure of moves and counter-moves. Drawing as erasing reveals as much as it covers. The results are hypnotic and transfixing.

Ryota Nojima’s work is not rendered from nor does it depict specific objects; instead his paintings are reflections of fragments of experiences and memories that grow out of a daily drawing routine. He pursues a unique expressive world that is not bound by strict formal parameters or by specific objectivity. His particular view of the world and his place within it results in work full of both subtle narratives and evocative abstraction. So much of Nojima’s visual language is a reflection of his ability to bring imagery to his audience that is both inexhaustible and accessible; the openness of his strategy leaves plenty of room for interpretation and experience. Color, line, shape, mark and image act as invitations to a visual encounter that communicates through inference and suggestion.

(b. 1987) in Tokyo, Japan, Ryota Nojima lives and works in Tokyo. Nojima has had solo exhibitions at Hagiwara Projects and Tokyo Wonder site Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan. Group Exhibitions include Namisagasitekkara in Tokyo, Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo in Kyoto and Fondazione Querini Stampali in Venezia. Nojima earned a BA in painting from Musashino Art University, Tokyo, Japan.

(b. 1978) in Fukui prefecture, Japan, Shunsuke Imai lives and works in Tokyo. Imai has had solo exhibitions at Hagiwara Projects, Gallery Kart and Shiseido gallery in Tokyo, Japan. Group Exhibitions include Fuchu Art Museum, Hagiwara Projects in Tokyo, Shane Campbell Gallery in Chicago. Imai earned a MA from Musashino Art University, Tokyo, Japan.

(b. 1988) in Kumamoto, Japan, Soshi Matsunobe lives and works in Kyoto and Shiga, Japan. Matsunobe has had solo exhibitions at Hagiwara Projects, Gallery PARC in Tokyo, Japan and Kyoto. Köln in Cologne, Germany. Group exhibitions include Pehu, Osaka, Hagiwara Projects, Tokyo and soto-kyoto, Kyoto. Matsunobe has completed his studies at the Kyoto Saga University of Arts, Kyoto, Japan.

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  • Ryota Nojima, Men and Women 105, 2016, oil on canvas, 25.6 x 20.8 inches
  • Shunsuke Imai, untitled, 2018, acrylic on canvas, 45.2 x 36.2 inches
  • Soshi Matsunobe, Appear on Disappear Drawing - Disappear on Appear Drawing, 2018, pencil on embossed paper, 39.3 x 28.6 inches
  • Ryota Nojima, Men and Women 13, 2014, oil on canvas, 20.8 x 17.9 inches
  • Ryota Nojima, Energy of earth, 2012, oil on canvas, 20.8 x 17.9 inch
  • Ryota Nojima, earth, 2012, oil on canvas, 7 x 5.5 inch
  • Ryota Nojima, Patrol, 2013, oil on canvas, 13.1 x 9.5 inches
  • Shunsuke Imai, untitled, 2018, acrylic on canvas, 19.6 x 15.7 inches
  • Ryota Nojima, Marble and face, 2012, oil on canvas, 10.7 x 8.6 inch
  • Shunsuke Imai, untitled, 2018, acrylic on canvas 19.6 x 15.7 inches