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Kirico Tanikawa

24th April

After The Rain

Red Lighter

rough road


Kirico Tanikawa exhibited  new work 4月24日/24.April, plus 赤いライタ/Red Lighter, 雨あ がり/After The Rain and 砂利道/ Rough Road in Leaving Language at The Metropole Gallery Folkestone England.

Kirico Tanikawa’s paintings are as evasive as forensic photographs, like evidence they present a series of clues that refuse any obvious reason or purpose casually objects wait and question what it all means, like a mood board of bits and pieces without script or conclusion. Vignettes in a baroque tableaux of the overlooked returned as an urbane reliquary familiar as it is dislocated.


The unique aspect of the Metropole Gallery was it's six metre high windows that looked across the English Channel to France. These also drew in light to allow razor sharp illumination of surfaces. Shadows and Sunshine fell across the paintings of Kirico Tanikawa.

They were like items from a modern Cinderella story that ominously lay in a Jigsaw puzzle of canvases, these iconic motifs were two pink shoes, a red lighter and a white decorated brassiere. Images that at first took your attention as recognisable and yet uncanny in that context, an uncomfortable frisson in the imagination: why had these possessions been left on a road?


Whilst perhaps thinking how a crime scene might be rendered or even a hint at erotic fantasy, the eye became entangled in the background. These grey coloured surfaces were filled with textures. However, they were principally images of empty spaces. Of course nothing is ever empty, yet into this apparent nothingness emerged paintings as beautiful as a Summer's day. The gravel became small mountain ranges of crystal, it was like a microscopic cartography.

We must then also contemplate the hours spent rendering such details of Heavenly rapture or perhaps they were an exercise in oblivion? Is this the kind of perspective one needs to transcend an indifferent world? Paintings are semiotic maps in which the stitching of a shoe or clear fluid in a plastic lighter can be no more revealing than the invisible noise of rain on tarmac.


These images are not what they seem but rather lead us towards another reading of surfaces, an enigma or code is commonly understood as something hidden in plain view and so it is with the pictures of Kirico Tanikawa.

Every Artist invites interpretations in the plural rather than the singular, questioning the frameworks of words and of language.

Waugh Office was established in 2011 by Julia Waugh and Mark Waugh,

 as a hybrid platform curating exhibitions, events and publications internationally

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