TRAILING THE NORTH WIND 6th - 29th May 2009 Solo Exhibition at Glasgow Art Club
Trailing on the wind,
The smoke from Mount Fuji
Melts into the sky.
So too my thoughts-
Unknown their resting place.
"The places are waymarks on a poetic northern trail, points along the wandering way of movement and solitude. Trying to grasp the ungraspable infinity of the world, with its energy yet reposeful essence. This attitude was encouraged by Haiku and Zen, such as Basho (17th C) and Zen master Dogen (13th C). Interest in Japanese aesthetics began as a teenager watching Kurosawa's 'Seven Samurai' and his version of Macbeth 'Throne of Blood'.
The show's visual basis began in 07/08 drawing out in Tokyo (Telecom towers on the scraper skyline; central Tokyo at Hibiya; 400 year old Honmon-ji in South West Tokyo; at the painted concrete space-ship like Senso-ji pagoda), spreading out of the metropolis by Shinkansen and ferry. Alone in Matsumoto by the snowy Japan Alps I worked at the old castle and enjoyed onsen baths. I painted around Bitchu-Matsuyama castle which Kurosawa filmed for Throne of Blood, plus other areas including Golden Turtle Castle (Shikoku)..."
Showing large ink paintings and works with bold mark-making. Roaming West and East charting the manmade and natural from Tokyo to Arrochar, the solo show was accompanied by an essay (Click here for essay) 'Thomson Drawing' by Alan Wilson, and featured in various publications. Objects, including artist's books, stamps and tools were presented in boxes, with haiku and other poetry from Scottish, Japanese and other poets/philosophers on the walls, and the series of 2 metre square ink works used mounted Japanese Washi paper to contrast with the grey walls in the imposing architecture of the Mackintosh designed GAC Gallery. They combined old methods such as Sumi ink and Fude brushes with modern materials like markers and pens. The artist used stamps he cut with an original design marked Kitakaze - North Wind, methods he would go on to learn more about in Japan.