ミヤザキケンスケ 絵本「Over the Wall」原画展

Kensuke Miyazaki

Original Paintings from the Picture Book “Over the Wall”

2024.02.15 - 2024.02.24
11:00 -19:00 (Closes at 17:00 on Saturdays)
*Closed on Feb 18 & 19
ABOUT

ART FOR THOUGHT is pleased to exhibit the original paintings from Kensuke Miyazaki’s picture book,”Over the Wall.”

This exhibition will showcase the original paintings of the murals that Miyazaki has painted around the world. And these paintings will be turned into one picture book and published by TOKYO SHOSEKI CO., LTD. Please come and see the original works of expression that seek world peace.

ARTIST'S INTRODUCTION / STATEMENT

It has been more than 10 years since I began working with local people around the world to leave murals. I have left many murals in various places like slums in Kenya, women's prisons in Ecuador, and children's wards in Pakistan, collaborating with people with whom I would normally have little contact. The process of people of different races, religions, and cultures forming bonds and becoming friends as they continue to work together is interesting, and has been the focus of my activities to date.

The theme of my painting is "Super Happy". I do not draw anything negative, and my creed is to draw 100% happy pictures that make everyone happy the moment they see those pictures. However, there are some problems in the world that cannot be solved by "Happy" alone.

In fact, the mural I painted in Ukraine in 2017 was destroyed by the Russian military invasion. The shock of the destruction of the mural, which I had painted with displaced people on the theme of peace, was so great that I spent some time in dismay. However, if it is destroyed, I only need to re-paint it, and it has become my goal to one day paint a mural in Ukraine again.

I am pleased to announce that my mural project "Over the Wall" will be published as a picture book, and the original drawings will be exhibited.

BOOK OVERVIEW

Sammy the swallow flies around the world. He has a human friend named Hiroshi who lives in Ishinomaki. In Ishinomaki, there is one of the murals created through the "Over the Wall" project, and Winnie the whale in the painting introduces Sammy to his friends in murals around the world. Sammy travels around the world, meeting Tiny the hummingbird in Ecuador and hearing stories of sad prisoners in jail who broke the law because of their poverty. He is told that you cannot drink the nectar from the flowers in the pictures, but those painted flowers can blossom in people's hearts. In East Timor, we meet Felix the crocodile, who teaches him about the importance of the sun and how it gives life to people. He learned that the sun is painted on the walls of hospitals as a symbol of protecting life. Next, Sammy flies to Ukraine. There he meets Kira, a seagull, and he hears an old Ukrainian tale about a glove dropped by a traveler that warms various animals and the warmth of the glove creates peace.

Sammy returns to Ishinomaki and talks with Winnie. He learns from Winnie that there was once a big tsunami here, and that even nature can turn on you from time to time. Hiroshi learns from Sammy about murals around the world and draws flowers, hummingbirds, and crocodiles in his sketchbook. Then another swallow comes along and tells him that there is a war going on in Ukraine. The Ukrainian mural is damaged and the animals in the glove seem to be gone. The animals are at a loss. Tiny the hummingbird does the least he can do: he takes a drop of water in his mouth and tries to put out the flames of war.

Hiroshi, who has no wings, is at a loss as to what he can do. But then, Sammy the swallow said something to Hiroshi…

BIOGRAPHY

Born in Saga City in 1978. After completing a master's degree in art at the University of Tsukuba, he moved to the U.K., where he worked on the theme of "Super Happy". He has been leading the project "Over the Wall", an activity to paint murals around the world, and has been involved in activities conducted in various places like slum in Kenya (2015), a national hospital in East Timor (2016), Ukraine (a joint production with the UNHCR in 2017), and a women's prison in Ecuador (2018). In this solo exhibition, he will present original artwork from his English-language picture book "Over the Wall" (Tokyo Shoseki), a compilation of his past activities, prior to its publication, scheduled for June 2024.

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