Cracked Up

Eggs-traordinary Works By Junichiro Iwase

February 2 - April 27, 2007

Opening Reception: Feb 2, 2007, 3 - 6pm, Artist in Attendance

Art Beatus (Vancouver) Consultancy Ltd. is pleased to present new works by local artist, Junichiro Iwase in the featured exhibition, “Cracked Up!”.  Junichiro brings two series of giggle-inducing work to this exhibition; his dark yet humorous ‘Egg’ series from recent past and a delightfully fun new series of work that incorporates eggshells as texture for his paintings.  “Cracked Up!” begins Friday, February 2, 2007 with an opening reception starting at 3pm and ending at 6pm; the artist will be in attendance and the public are warmly invited and encouraged to attend.

Junichiro’s ‘Egg’ paintings were inspired by his ‘Sick in Japan’ series which was developed while Iwase was living in Tokyo; the works featured a character named St (pronounced S.T.) who claimed 'Japan was sick'.  A satirical look at modern-day Japan, no one really knew if the character’s point of view was based in a social, economic or political way but the works did receive some criticism; viewers questioned whether the opinion of the character reflected the view of the artist; some even suggested Iwase was anti-Japanese.  While continuing with the same subject matter, the artist softened the appearance of his paintings by changing the colours and materials used for the work; the reverse occurred in which viewers thought the paintings to be cute.  Iwase thought the effect to be humorous and began striving for middle ground.  “One day, St’s eyes fell out and became an egg....”.  The character, St died and eggs, one, two, three, began to appear on the canvas.

A solitary egg painted on each canvas presents viewers with an ever-recognizable constant, yet there are also noticeable differences in the slight shape or presence of each egg and the more obvious variations in colour.  “There is something magical about creating the same thing over and over again.  It is like looking at the moon.  Sometimes I think I see the same moon every night but each time I do, it is different.  The subtle change in the moon’s nightly appearance always inspires me to create something new from the same thing”. 

From the dark and comical egg paintings grew a more lighthearted, playful series of work.  Portraits created with eggshells as a base for texture, feature friends and family of the artist, some recognizable Vancouver locals, nature, and animals.  Both series seem to inspire giddiness - it’s hard to prevent a chuckle, if not a laugh when viewing the works.  While the ‘Egg’ series may have projected an element of something heavier in past, the progression towards a brighter, cheerier series of work may suggest an optimistic and hopeful future.

Junichiro Iwase was born in Tokyo, Japan but raised in Vancouver, Canada.  In 1997 he graduated from Johnson Atelier Institute of Sculpture in New Jersey and shortly after moved into the area of painting.  Iwase’s works have been featured in several international art fairs and he has had exhibitions in New York and Tokyo.  “Cracked Up!” will be his first solo show in Canada and his works will featured at the upcoming Tokyo International Art Fair in April 2007.  The “Cracked Up!” exhibition runs from February 2, 2007 through to April 27, 2007.

Art Beatus, with a location in Vancouver, Canada and two locations in Hong Kong, showcases international art with a focus on contemporary Chinese art.

Art Beatus (Vancouver) is located in the Nelson Square Office Tower at 108 – 808 Nelson Street.  For more information, please contact Media Relations, Tamla Mah by email to or by telephone at 604.688.2633.   

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