The girls in these paintings have a haunting beauty that seamlessly blends youthful innocence with eerie suggestions of death. In his work, Japanese artist Kazuki Takamatsu makes artwork that explores the emotional aspects of Japanese society. He says, “My art deals with a fictional form of death…a metaphor for people losing their soul and place in society.”
To create each piece, Takamatsu goes through an extensive creative process. He first develops a rough sketch with pencil or pen. Once his idea is formed, the artist creates a digital file with multiple cross sections, adding gradations of light and dark, and then printing on a customized tarp. The tarp is then glued onto a panel where Takamatsu touches the piece up with acrylic paints to emphasize the lines and textures, and then finishes the piece off with a matte medium and an overlay of jet-black acrylic gouache.
The final results are these stunning monochromatic layers that form an almost topographical map of each scene, a representation of the layers of emotion that exist within a person. Takamatsu says, “Everyone has pain and issues. But when you experience pain, it makes you more caring for other people, and is proof of your personal growth. That’s where the beauty lies.” If you like this work, you can check it out in person in Takamatsu’s solo show at the Corey Helford Gallery in Culver City, California.