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Featured | Asako. NAG

NAG, as an artist deeply engaged with the world's events, channels her profound emotional responses into her art. Her works vividly capture her intense feelings of grief, anger, and resilience, reflecting a raw and powerful emotional depth that resonates through her expressive paintings.

When Russia invaded Ukraine in 2022 she was so shocked that she painted “Burning City,” saying, "How long will humans continue their foolish wars? What is the point of using massive amounts of weapons, and destroying infrastructure and human lives while making the environment even worse than it already is?" The spiral depicted in the painting asks will these wars just continue to repeat?

The woodblock print "Melancholy of Staircase City" portrays a grieving barefooted woman on a city staircase, reminiscent of de Chirico's style. The painting, with its theme and composition, is also likened to Dürer's "Melancholia" (1514). It symbolically conveys the harsh reality of women and the poor facing emergency situations like pandemics and wars in urban settings. The staircase in the artwork represents societal disparities, prompting contemplation on the challenges experienced by marginalized groups.

NAG's artistic response to the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011 and the Fukushima nuclear disaster is reflected in her depiction of electric wires and references to Kenji Miyazawa in her works. Kenji Miyazawa, a Japanese poet and writer, frequently emphasized the phrase "Honto no saiwai (true blessing)." These elements in NAG's art symbolize her contemplation of seeking positivity amidst tragedy and chaos, showcasing her desire to convey a message of hope even in the face of adversity.

These works depict NAG's emotions in response to the harsh conditions of the world, but they also reveal her strong desire to obtain some positive answer by depicting them. This is her way of life, and the way she tries to carve out a hopeful future is the essence of her nature.

Asako. NAG has exhibited at Le Salon in France, as well as in the United States, Portugal, Poland, Switzerland, Greece, and other countries. She has been selected for numerous awards, including second place at the ALAF Apollo Grand Prix in Greece, and the Taiwan-Japan Art Exhibition. She held solo and two-person shows at Gallery Hinoki every year from 2015 to 2023, and a solo show at Gallery and Link 81 in Ginza in 2023. Born in 1958, Graduated from Musashino Art University, Department of Oil Painting in 2012, and graduated from Yokohama National University, School of Education, Department of Fine Arts in 1981.

- JC

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