eN arts

Compression : Natsuki Oyagi + Keisuke Matsuda curated by Takashi Fukumoto


Compression : Natsuki Oyagi + Keisuke Matsuda
curated by Takashi Fukumoto

Natsuki Oyagi (The Third Gallery Aya)
Keisuke Matsuda

Friday, 7 January 2022 – Sunday, 30 January 2020
Exhibition Hours Friday, Saturday, and Sundays 12:00-18:00
Appointments Available Upon Request
No Admission Charge

eN arts is pleased to present “Compression: Natsuki Oyagi + Keisuke Matsuda” curated by Takashi Fukumoto (Research Director @ The National Museum of Art, Osaka). He chose two uprising artists, Natsuki Oyagi and Keisuke Matsuda for the first exhibition of the year (2022) at eN arts. After two years of suffering from the pandemic, the young, fresh and graceful works will bring you the hopes and the best wishes for the new year.

eN arts | Naomi Rowe

Press Release

Compression: Natsuki Oyagi + Keisuke Matsuda

It is not about drawing what you can see nor making what you can’t see visible. It is also different from presenting lines and colors themselves, avoiding the actual purpose of expressing something in particular. A drawing is something apart from a representation and also from what is actually before your own eyes. The work, as it gradually responds to something that catches one’s eye, or something that stimulates one’s body, or something that vaguely draws one’s attention to leave only a slight sense of discomfort, seems somehow to be a process of affirmation.

To start, Natsuki Oyagi: Her process begins with a questioning “Hmmm.” For example, it can be said that her main purpose is to achieve a sense of distance from hard-to-describe city sights, such as crumbling old showroom windows or fences riddled with wooden sticks. But, during the creative process, the sense of incongruity is not reduced, but rather amplified instead.   A screen crudely divided into sections with masking tape, using photographs as clues. Acrylic paint is applied, a cutting sheet attached, and a silk screen is printed, but the process steps are difficult to follow, making it unclear at a single glance where was painted and where was printed.

Next, Keisuke Matsuda: His work “Converting the Entire World into a Painting” is difficult to verbalize, even for the artist himself. Of course, it is not expressing super realistically the appearance of things, but it is also not a clean-cut abstraction that omits the unnecessary elements of an object. Evoking calligraphy, but not functioning as symbols – the strokes “stop”, “jump”, and “pay”.   Or, a squashed lump of soil causing to you suspect it was a failure.   One can say that his paintings and ceramic works derive from his hands groping for the feel of the world and his gradual capturing of fragments of the world around him as his hand move.

I guess you can say that both Oyagi and Matsuda are drawing impressions. However, the impressions are sparce weak and untrustworthy, so to describe them as a motif = motive is feeble. It is for this reason an artist simplifies.   The act of squeezing out compressed, simplified impressions is completely different from looking back on vague past memories. A work that begins with you asking yourself why you felt uncomfortable and question what you saw in the first place. You can render it precisely, or you can let simply momentum move your hands, but in either case the process is ultimately done while fumbling half in the dark.

A shape with an undefined outline. Multiple scenes, times, and events – mixed and coexisting. All the images presented cannot be given a unique or unified interpretation. But, not to worry. Even if I draw without knowing an unfamiliar object, in the end it is because I really don’t comprehend it. You can say that it is the outcome of trying to grasp this incomprehensible world as an incomprehensible thing.

Takashi Fukumoto
Research Director
The National Museum of Art Osaka

Natsuki Oyagi


「立ちはだかるしつげん、鉢合わせたウィンドウ」 2021 | H1,000 x W803 mm | acrylic color, cutting sheet and silkscreen on panel © Natsuki Oyagi

I take pictures of things I find along the roadside that make me say to myself “Oh, what’s this” and draw them as motifs. For example, they might be things like lumps of faded plastic. Looking at the photographs, I am driven by the desire to know why I went as far as to record such objects, what I saw in them, and so on. Just as there is a connection that appears when you capture them indirectly via photographs, there are connections that are visualized as you draw or use silkscreen or materials to shape the image. My works are a collection of the processes of confronting these mysteriously vague connections. What was an unconscious act because of the indirect method used emerges in another form, and I think then something new is revealed.

Natsuki Oyagi CV

Keisuke Matsuda


UNTITLED | 2021 | H220 x W293 mm | acrylic colr on paper © Keisuke Matsuda

I try to express the way the world exists, the image of the world itself. What I mean is that the conscious act of making a work, the time it takes to renew at that moment, the entirety of the human system of language – everything and all that exists equally in the world. It is not possible to display this visual image on a canvas. It is unrecognizable to start, and an attempt to express it in itself creates a contradiction, but it is not that I am denying that I am making a work itself or letting my body improvise as I create that work. Unrecognizable things and denials themselves also exist in reality. I create by returning to the reality at that instant that I see before my eyes, beyond denial and affirmation.


Keisuke Matsuda

eN arts conversation Takashi Fukumoto and Minoru Shimizu