Naoki SHIMOYAMA Solo Exhibition

2023/10/13 -2023/10/28

gallery UG Tennoz


gallery UG Tennoz is pleased to present a Solo Exhibition by Naoki SHIMOYAMA from Friday, October 13 to Saturday, Occtober 28.

This will be Shimoyama’s first solo show at gallery UG. The exhibition’s main feature will be three works inspired by The Lady and the Unicorn tapestries, one of the greatest masterpieces of medieval European art. One of the main pieces is the first portrait of a human figure for Shimoyama, who has consistently used animals as motifs in his works. We will also exhibit a number of pieces showcasing the evolution of Shimoyama’s work.

We hope you’ll enjoy this exhibition which is going to be a unique chance to see both his old and new works.

gallery UG

Since completing his graduate studies at Tama Art University, Shimoyama has been studying various wood carving techniques and creating and creating animal sculptures for more than 20 years.
Looking back at Shimoyama’s early activities in the 2000s, we can see that the animals formed from diverse materials were often fused with plants. The analytical insight into life based on the theory of evolution and the epistemological transformation resulting from his approach to “mimicry” can be read as the characteristics of these works. Later, in the “Man and Animal” series of the 2010s, which features used single animals as motifs, he intended to renew sculpture with meta-physical and anthropomorphic elements and to connect it with modern Japanese wood carving styles, such as that of Koun Takamura.
Through the many years of practice, Shimoyama developed a unique view of sculpture and an extremely special relationship with wood, a material that he has never let go. For an artist who expresses the love of life and an awe, dread towards nature, wood has always been the most effective medium to examine the relationship between humans and nature from a macroscopic perspective. This is also why in this “Anthropocene” era, Shimoyama, with his ecological outlook, has sometimes ironically projected the image of humans onto animal representations, showing the enormous impact humans have on the environment. His self-consciousness about the imbalance between humans and the animals/nature used by them is also woven into these projections. Shimoyama once expressed his conflict with the deprivation of life in a reference to his hobby of mountain stream fishing. Just like dropping the fishhook into the river, the act of carving wood with a sharp knife shows the subject-object relationship we intrude on nature.

Excerpt from “The Animal Statues of Naoki Shimomura - Atoma / Kenon / Clinamen” by Keisuke Mori (curator, art critic / Chiba City Museum of Art)

Exhibition Information

Exhibition name
Naoki SHIMOYAMA Solo Exhibition
2023/10/13 -2023/10/28
11:30 – 18:30
Sundays, Mondays
gallery UG Tennoz


To inquire about this exhibition