k a o r u   a r i m a

The drawings of Kaoru Arima (b. Komaki, Japan, 1969) can be read as transcriptions of immediate thoughts and a bizarre, rarefied imagination. Executed with uncertain lines and light touches they seem to have generated themselves spontaneously. His subjects are composite creatures – humans with animal bodies, plants with human faces, organs of the body from which other forms and organisms grow – and they reveal the fertile imagery of the artist’s interior and aesthetic cosmos. The deliberately amateur execution, which recalls children’s graffiti, and the choice of cheap or relatively worthless materials (wrapping paper and newspapers) as a support for his pen and pencil drawings emphasise their essential, lyrical nature. Suspended between rigour and reverie, they innovatively and surprisingly blend the Japanese gigatradition (drawing for one’s own pleasure) and the world of drawing and youthful collective imagination in contemporary Japan.