Tsutomu Kawakami (b. 1968, Hakodate)

Kawakami's debut solo exhibition "Waiting for the Moon" was held in 2007, and he won the Vanilla Grand Prize Incentive Award in 2012. Kawakami's sculptures are at once cute and sexy. She expresses beauty based on grotesqueness. Each piece combines a young woman in loose-fitting clothing with a cityscape. The women have various expressions, such as closed eyes or staring into the distance. 

In 2014, Tsutomu Kawakami's exhibition "Sleeping beauty" was held at Vanilla Gallery. Kawakami began creating works associated with "death," such as those shown in this solo exhibition, in about 2011.

Prior to that, he used the same lacquer production technique but expressed the inner nature and spirituality of human beings in a more traditional style compared to his current works.
He says that one of the reasons he began to focus on the theme of "death" is that life, which was born in a very familiar place, made him very conscious of death. Another reason was that I felt uncomfortable expressing life in the form of sculptural objects and the materials that form them.
He found the reality of human expression in "the expression of human beings without life" and "the expression of death.

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