Shunga Yobai

柴 一茗 CHAI Yiming
裴 晶 PEI Jing
余 启平 YU Qiping
内田 江美 Emi UCHIDA
佐藤 令奈 Haruna SATO

2020.7.25 – 9.6


Yobai: Erotica at the Ukiyo-e era in Japan
“The Tale of Genji” by Murasaki Shikibu is one of the classical Japanese novels, as the equivalent of “Dream of the Red Chamber”, in the book the character Hikaru Genji was alike to Jia Baoyu from the “Red Chamber”. Many episodes appear in the novel as “Yobai: Crawling at night” which refers to a man sneaking into the chamber of a woman that he attracted to in the middle of the night for coitus, and leave quietly before the dawn. This was a custom in Japan abolished until modern times. Minorities in China seem to have a similar custom but it only has happened at the maternal clan tribes.Philosophers through ages pondering art or lust would eventually bring up the functionalism – an ultimate form of play. From the verbal game to the physical collision, people extend their lives through a cognitive excitement and imagination, longing for surreal pleasures, which separated from the functional reality of “breeding”. In the book of “The Explanation of Dreams”, Freud’s description of functionalism and the discussing of “perversion of goals” and “perversion of purpose”; Behaviors goes beyond normal which bordering on the “pathological” or “perverted” were characterized vividly at Bataille’s novel “Le bleu du Ciel”. His appraising and inheritance of Freud’s works is an important part of the histories of philosophy and art. The influence of thoughts incarnates into a theoretical life.

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About the artist

柴一茗CHAI Yiming portrait

柴 一茗|CHAI Yiming (b.1965)

Date of birth: 1965

Place of birth: Harbin, China

Gender: Male

Place of work: Shanghai, China

1987 Graduated from Shanghai Commercial College, Design Department

Artist Chai Yiming’s works are always full of “accidents”. For example, the absurd and unconnected figurative combinations within the picture will bring the viewer a sense of surprise beyond the picture. It brings the viewer a feeling of travelling beyond the picture. His paintings seem to create an opportunity. Gathering these unbelievable elements – he often intentionally ignores social symbols and other corresponding clues – rather than using an easily recognisable narrative technique. The result of this is. The line between abstraction and ornate narrative devices becomes very blurred.

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裴 晶|PEI Jing (b.1962)

Pei Jing was born in Beijing in 1962.

He graduated from the department of stage design of Shanghai Theatre Academy in the early 1980s and has been teaching in the academy until now. Since then, he engaged in art creation and teaching.

In 1989, he participated in the “Chinese Modern Art Exhibition” held by The National Art Museum of China in Beijing. His works were exhibited, published and collected in Europe, America, Hong Kong, and Taiwan in the late 1990s.

Pei Jing did not think that he was making a satire. He did not think that there was anything shameful in the vulgar aspect of public life. On the contrary, he thought that it was just the daily expression of healthy and real human nature, and there was no need to hide it.

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余 启平|YU Qiping (b.1957)

born in 1957· China

Yu Qiping has created vague world for us. It is introverted, reserved, and intoxicated, but the truth of the world is blooming. It can arouse your sense of tranquility, focus and desire for the things that persist, and conflicts are dissolved and turned into the thirst for authentic lyricism, the yearning for mysterious joy wisdom is meaningless here, and what is truly meaningful is the indulgence of aesthetic existence. This pursuit is also reflected in Yu Qipings painting skills. He has a deep understanding of various traditional techniques of Chinese painting, but has made modernistic transformations to them; on this basis he has formed his own unique painting vocabulary. This vocabulary constitutes the lexical basis of the aesthetic tendency of Neo-Orientalism. I like his painting aesthetics very much: a style and an inclination permeated with a very strong new oriental meaning. It is not a simple return to Buddhist Zen, nor is it a reproduction of Taoisms thought of detachment from the world, but in a modern context. Through the avoidance of mechanical, crowded, busy, useless and other living conditions, it shows the true nature of human beings, the artist intends to reveal the pursuit and interpretation of the state of being human beings in the world.

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内田 江美|Emi UCHIDA (b.1970)

Born in Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan

1990  Graduated from Women’s Art College

1990-2003  Worked as a fashion designer and then started his journey as an artist.

2002  Studied copper engraving under the tutelage of contemporary artist Akiyama Ryoichi

From the age of eight to 2004, she has been studying painting with Japanese painter Ando Mineko

2005  Studied under the tutelage of the inheritor of Bizen ware, Abe Anjin

Emi Uchida’s abstract works are infinitely extending as a whole. But on closer inspection, they revealed a dense interplay of charcoal paintinged lines suggestive of a network.The impression conveyed by the painted surfaces was of space exploding into infinity. Here were the neural networks of the human body connecting with the unbounded expanses of the universe and transporting with them the viewer. The familiar segued spectacularly into the ineffable.

At the same time, Emi Uchida is also engaged in printmaking. She draws nourishment from the “Shunga” of the Edo period, using lines and collages to deal with taboos and explicitness, concealment and revealing, and endow tradition with new interpretation and vitality.

Her works have been exhibited in Japan, China, Taiwan (China), the United States, Europe, Turkey, Singapore, and other places. Some important solo exhibitions were held in 2016 at the Taipei 101 Tower Art Museum (Taiwan, China), in 2018 at the Miura Art Museum (Ehime, Japan), in 2018 at the Kaohsiung City Government Cultural Bureau/Taiwan Cultural Center (Taiwan, China), and in 2020 at the Setouchi Art Museum (Okayama, Japan) and other institutions.

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Haruna SATO 佐藤 令奈 2018_CV

佐藤 令奈|Haruna SATOb.1984

Haruna Sato is a painter who treats the canvas like human skin, and whose paintings make viewers want to reach out and touch them. Not confined to depictions of babies and human bodies, her works are “slightly but quite different” based on her own awareness and resolve about the limited but definite change in and diversity of subjects. Her art rests on unswerving, distinctive “material” and “value”, thanks to these traits, her works manage to convey a fleshy blurriness and moistness imbued with a vital force, however, the motifs may differ.

Sato begins making works by applying oil-based paint to hemp canvas as if tapping it on. This tapping technique leaves subtle indentations in the paint, to which several types of warm-color paint are successively applied in the same manner. She then shaves the painted surface with sandpaper, carefully bringing out various layers of hues hidden beneath. Through this process of tapping and sanding, which requires the use of the artist’s physical skills, the texture of the canvas gradually approaches that of human skin.

Sato has remained very active and made outstanding strides since her selection for the Tokyo Wonder Wall Award in 2009. Then, she won the Nanjing International Art Festival Grand Prix, the Artist Sponsorship Award from the KAMIYAMA Foundation, and other awards. Her activities are hardly confined to Japan, she also took part in international art fairs in Taipei, New York, India, Seoul, Tokyo, etc.; she continued to participate in the Nakanojo Biennale (in Gunma Prefecture, Japan) and stage an elaborate exhibit.

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