21.7.10

Audrey Kawasaki

I'm no art critic, and when it comes to the work of one of my favourite artists of all time, the oft-cited references to her style being a mixture of Art Nouveau and shoujo manga are things I can't refute or outdo. But Audrey Kawasaki's astoundingly beautiful, surreal, eerie portraits of girls (and some boys) with heavily-lidded eyes and no worries about what a potentially prudish onlooker might think of them, are a treat for the opticals- make no mistake about that.

Octogirls (2006)

Dishonest Heart (2008)
It's hard to put my finger on just what it is that I love so much about Audrey's work- its beauty goes beyond the obvious, beyond the lines and the details, to the attitudes of her girls (and boys). The mere fact of prettiness isn't what makes them so appealing- the allure has something to do with these beautiful would-be innocents who really don't seem to care that much about what they should be like, being frequently charged with obvious undercurrents of things that are darker, deeper and not pretty at all. Erotica, grotesqueness and the alternate-universe atmosphere created in part by the grain and natural lines of the wood Audrey paints on, coexist in apparent, if somewhat uneasy, peace in each work. This is something that not everyone is comfortable seeing, if the odd spot of online criticism (absurd, IMO) claiming that her work encourages child pornography is anything to go by.

Linger (2008)

Hyakki Yakou (2009)
Doodles. No less lovely than her finished work..

Audrey's latest pieces, which were engraved wooden brooches designed by her, are on sale now- to those of you who like her work, I suggest getting yourself a brooch. And to those of you who can't buy it and aren't too familiar with her work, I suggest looking at Audrey's website or her livejournal, or following her on Twitter if that's what you like. As for lucky people who live in Melbourne or Sydney and are reading this, do visit Audrey's show at the Outre Gallery in either city in October. I'm only sorry I can't be there.

pictures taken from i-seldom-do.livejournal.com and audrey-kawasaki.com, used with the permission of the artist.

3 comments:

A! (the neo) said...

I haven't been through all her pieces yet, but I find a kind of silence in her work.

This is a very interesting find. Thank you.

Fashion Tidbits said...

very pretty!

Jooey said...

wow, they're so beautiful.. thanks for introducing such a great artist.

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