Keisuke Yamamoto (1961 - )

After graduating from the Kanazawa College of Art with a major in oil painting, Yamamoto then studied lithography techniques at a printing studio. From then on, Yamamoto has been an independent painter and lithograph artist, known for creating images of still life and landscapes.

 “There are no redos with lithograph. It requires a great deal of systematic planning in the carving process. That’s why lithograph is fun,” says Yamamoto. The instantaneous beauty created by the interaction between silence and time and light and shadow is the concept behind Yamamoto’s work. With a series titled “Light, Time, Silence” which began in 1992, Yamamoto believes that being able to depict the natural flow of time is the most important aspect of his art. In order to illustrate this flow of time, he states that the surrounding spaces must be captured in such a way that allows for the depiction of the flow of time. In order to achieve this, the gradation of lighting must be illustrated with accuracy as well. Humans are able to see and understand the world visually because of the light that reflects off various objects. Once the light enters our eyes, the information is then processed in the brain and then presented to us as a particular object with a particular shape, color, etc. Hence, in illustrating a part of our visual world, we are actually depicting light, and in illustrating the flow of time, we are actually portraying the changes in lighting. This concept applies not only to the still life and landscapes, but to other subjects as well, such as people. Specifically for the Light, Time, Silence series, the emotional aspects of the still life and landscapes are removed, which help to highlight the underlying motifs that forms the visual appeal of the image.

 

On top of his lithographs, he also produces oil paintings, which proudly hangs next to his prints at his atelier in Kyoto. He told me that he has been working on a painting of a port in the south of France for an exhibition at a gallery in Ginza. Among the numerous works on display in his atelier hangs a painting of muscat grapes, which immediately grabbed my attention, but as a piece that holds many memories for Yamamoto, he told me he will never let that one go.

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