eN arts

Expect The Unexpected

shingo tanaka solo exhibition


Expect The Unexpected
shingo tanaka solo exhibition

2017.09.01 (fri.) – 09.30 (sat.)
open on fri., sat., & sun
weekday appointments are available
opening reception on 2017.09.01 (fri.) 18:00-20:00
NUIT BLANCHE 2017 on 2017.10.06 (fri.) 15:00-21:00


“Formed by the replication of simple actions.

Undulations and shadows are born within. Then, curved contours appear in harmonized shapes. Whether seen as a directed or a purely accidental outcome, the closer to that ambiguous border between the two, the more the imagination of the viewer is engaged.

Not introducing excessive intent.
But while not yielding all to the process alone
By placing myself in that narrow space, I link myself to the next thought.

Undoubtedly, being between the rich gradations of “this is how I wanted it” and “this is how it turned out”, you and I have the possibility of sharing a perspective and point of view”.

Tanaka Shingo


Tanaka Shingo was born in 1983 and is a graduate of Kyoto Seika University Graduate School of Arts. From even before entering his studies, Tanaka has continuously focused on the theme of “fire”, using flames as a material, a method, and as a tool.   As an artist exploring “fire” from different perspectives, he ventures back and forth in the narrow area between the act in which people control fire in “burning” or “melting” and the space “burning” and “melting” in which human guidance does not occur as he creates new works.

The “trans” in Tanaka’s first series of works “trans” was the transformation of many layered blocks of paper upon being burned, producing works that far exceeded expectations in beauty as the outer layers burned and transformed to carbon and ashes. From the “trans” series, Tanaka progressed through the “overlap”, “HEAT”, and “Quivering Boundary” series before circling back to “re:trans”. In the “re:trans” series, Tanaka combines dissimilar types of scrap materials and wood wastes before burning the combined forms with open flames in order to lay open the depth of the layers of the various materials and types of combustion and thereby produce works of surprising complexity.

With the “trace”, “rise”, “ephemeral”, and “meltrans” series as well, Tanaka produced fantastically creative works using but the single ongoing them of “fire”.   Please refer to the attachment for the full list of Tanaka’s series.

At this time, eN arts is pleased to present Tanaka’s eighth solo exhibition “Expect The Unexpected” in which he continues to expand his horizons with a new series “wrap”. In the “wrap” series, Tanaka employs steel plates, to which he applies flames under identical conditions such as, for example, applying a burner at specific locations for five seconds each, and repeating that process again and again. In this series, despite the reality that Tanaka is putting additional emphasis on his control of the creative process, he is demonstrating that his plans will be bent and warped just as the steel is bent and warped by the natural phenomenon of fire. With this approach, a totally unexpected “strange unbalance” from the phenomenon of applying heat is created that overwhelms completely the artist’s expected results.

From 125,000 years ago when humans tamed fire and started using it in everyday life, fire has been mankind’s greatest invention and the source of all types of gain. It has also, though, produced disasters, weapons, and other results that have repeatedly men. This is the dual nature of fire. Won’t you join us in looking in a new light the nature of something so taken for granted in our lives?

eN arts | Naomi Rowe