Painting for Joy: New Japanese Painting in the 1990s

This exhibition features 30 works in 55 pieces by nine artists: Echizenya Yoshitaka, Aida Makoto , Nukata Nobuhiko, Maruyama Naofumi, Kobayashi Takanobu, Murakami Takashi, Taro Chiezo, Nara Yoshitomo, and Fukuda Miran. It runs from May 10 to July 31, 2007 at the Japan Foundation in Toronto located at 131 Bloor Street West on the second floor of the Colonnade. Admission is free.

Painting for Joy: New Japanese Painting in the 1990s is an attempt to show how young Japanese artists have understood and tried to further develop artistic expression contrasting the long tradition of their genre with the nature of the final decade of the 20th century, a time of rapid development in information networks and communications technology. What is the role that painting can play amid the tumult of todays rapidly changing world, or even within the world of the arts? This is a question of concern not only in Japan but also throughout the world.

Today, it cannot be denied that painting as a genre of art has tended to grow closed and exclusive out of its very pursuit of autonomy and purity. If the viewer gains no enjoyment from what is seen in a painting and if a painting does not provide a place where some kind of communication is established between the work and the viewer or between the viewer and the artist, some fear that the raison dtre of painting itself may be at risk.

The artists whose works are included in this exhibition were born in or around the 1960s and were reared in the midst of the advanced consumer society, surrounded by a plethora of semiotics and information. By portraying the realities that actually surround us, they are attempting to open up new horizons in communication between people and painting.

For more information, please visit or call 416.966.1600.