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Aya Kawato
川人綾

1988
Born in Nara, Japan
2011
Kyoto Seika University, Art Department, Textile Course, B.A.
2014
École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-arts, Student Exchange Programe, Paris
2015
Tokyo University of the Arts, Graduate School of Fine Arts, Intermedia Art Course, M.A.
2015~
Tokyo University of the Arts, Graduate school of Fine Arts, Department of Intermedia Art, Doctoral Candidate Course

Awards

2016
Japan Arts Foundation
The 33th Mitsubishi Corporation Art Gate Program, Finalist
Independent 2016, Tagboat Art Fes,
Shonandai MY Gallery Prize (Jury’s Prize)
Katsumi Yamato Gallery Prize (Jury’s Prize),
The 11th Tagboat Award, Tomio Koyama Prize (Jury’s Prize)
The 30th Mitsubishi Corporation Art Gate Program, Finalist
2015
The 10th Geidai Art Plaza Awards 2015 Exhibition, Finalist
2012
The 16th Flag-art Exhibition 2012 in Gifu, Finalist

Selected Group Exhibitions

2016
Shonandai Project WILL, Shonandai MY Gallery, Tokyo
2016
The 33th Mitsubishi Corporation Art Gate Program, Eye of Gyre, Gyre, Tokyo
2016
Atlas 2016, Tokyo University of the Arts, Toride Campus, Ibaraki
2016
Independent 2016, Tagboat Art Fes, Hulic Hall, Tokyo
2016
The 11th Tagboat Award, IID Gallery, Ikejiri Institute of Design, Tokyo
2016
The 30th Mitsubishi Corporation Art Gate Program, Eye of Gyre, Gyre, Tokyo
2015
The 10th Geidai Art Plaza Awards 2015 Exhibition, Geidai Art Plaza, Tokyo University of the Arts, Tokyo
2015
Tokyo Design Week 2015, 100 Creators Exhibition, In front of the Meijijingu Gaien Memorial Picture Gallery, Tokyo
2015
SICF 16, Spiral Hall, Tokyo
2015
Tokyo University of the Arts Graduation Works Exhibitions, Tokyo University of the Arts, Tokyo
2014
Wip, Tokyo University of the Arts, Toride Campus, Ibaraki
2014
You’ve gone too far, Atelier Vilmouth, École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts de Paris, Paris
2012
Preliminary Review Exhibition, Tokyo University of the Arts, Toride Campus, Ibaraki
2012
The 16th Flag-art Exhibition 2012 in Gifu, Kanda-machi street, Gifu
2011
Atlas 2011, Tokyo University of the Arts, Toride Campus, Ibaraki
2011
Kyoto Seika University Graduation Works Exhibition 2011, Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art, Kyoto
2011
Ensemble of Yuko Hasegawa + 16 Students, Kyoto Seika University Gallery Fleur, Kyoto
2010
Wakuwaku Kyoto Project, Former Rissei Elementary School, Kyoto
2010
9, Shin-bi, Kyoto
2008
1968+40 Mode Make-up, Kenninji, Kyoto
Introduction

Aya Kawato was born in Nara – a place abundant with the traditional arts and crafts of Japan – and completed her undergraduate education at the art department of Kyoto Seika University, where she attended the textile course. While studying in Kyoto she became interested in Kasuri (絣), a type of ornamentally rich fabric, in which the fibres are dyed before they are woven into a fabric to create patterns and image in the final fabric through the process of weaving itself. (Prior to dyeing, sections of the warp and weft yarns are tightly wrapped with thread to protect them from dye, and when woven together, the undyed areas interlace to form patterns.) Since the process is extremely complicated and slips happen even in the practise of old masters, Japanese artisans developed a vast, theoretical field of a “slip/ズレ” traditionally being in some cases unacceptable, and in other cases admissible, or even worthy of praise as a moment of the highest creativity. These topics of regularity and discord, rule and its disruption, following the grid and breaking it, triggered Kawato’s theoretical search and her artistic practise. She has continued this work at her residence programme in École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-arts in Paris and then at the post-graduate school of Tokyo Art University.

At present, while using mainly painterly media, her research and artistic discoveries still lay in the dimension of the world of textile and weaving. Her method consists in covering a wooden panel using five-millimetre wide masking tape, painting and cutting parts of it. This process is repeated until the panel presents a grid that is so complex that the mind fails helplessly to grasp it in its totality. Yet, this is not the final step. Kawato takes off squares or stripes of previously applied paper to break and open the grid, bringing inconsistency into the totality of the intersecting order. She stops when she sees that the structure has gained a subtle balance with imperfection that can take the viewer beyond the constraints of the grid of his/her own imagination or consciousness.

From ancient weaving and dyeing techniques to the latest discoveries of neuroscientist, her multidirected vectors of interest are interwoven in the art pieces she creates. There is no surprise then that Kuwato is attracting a lot of attention, collecting seven awards in Japan just in 2016-2017. Currently she is working on her upcoming international shows.

Serected Works
C/U_mmm-mmm_(b)_I
2017
acrylic, paper on wooden paper
300x300cm
available
AyK_1701
C/U_mmm-mmm_(b)_I (detail)
2017
acrylic, paper on wooden paper
300x300cm
available
AyK_1701
C/U_mccciii-dccciii_(b)_I
2016
acrylic, paper on wooden panel
130.3x80.3cm
Private Collection
AyK_1606
C/U_mccciii-dccciii_(b)_I (detail)
2016
acrylic, paper on wooden panel
130.3x80.3cm
Private Collection
AyK_1606
C/U_mcdlvi-mxxx_(b)_II
2014
acrylic, paper on wooden panel
145.5x103cm
available
AyK_1604
C/U_mcdlvi-mxxx_(b)_II (detail)
2014
acrylic, paper on wooden panel
145.5x103cm
available
AyK_1604