Leo Kuelbs Collection
About the artists and curators:
Yuki Ideguchi is a 29-year-old Japanese painter. His first solo show was held in Tokyo in Summer 2015, followed by the first solo show in New York City in December 2015, at Chinese American Arts Council (CAAC)in SoHo, Manhattan, curated by Kyoko Sato.
Ideguchi’s works are based on the natural features, ideas, history and culture of Japan, with influence from China, other Asian cultures, and the United States. Waves can be seen in many of his works. Traditionally, many Japanese artists have featured the sea as a central aspect of their work because the Japanese consider the sea to be both sacred and a matter of life and death. Life and death is also important theme of his works, thus he paints skeletons, the universe in the background.
His talent was recognized at 16 when he received a design award at the “Exhibition of Fukuoka Prefecture” in 2002. His work was installed in an exhibition of a private collection at the world-renowned Mori Arts Center Gallery in Tokyo in 2010, when he was 24. He moved to New York shortly after finishing his MA in Japanese painting at Tokyo University of the Arts in 2013.
After moving to New York, Ideguchi changed his media from mineral, dye ink, black ink and paper to acrylic and canvas. The colors on his canvas became more vivid and his adoption of pop-style artwork has given his work a more universal, but still individual and unique, expression.
Tattoo is a form of expression signifying artist Kim Joon’s deeply imprinted desires and obsessions. More precisely, tattoos demonstrate the repression of individuals under a shifting set of social conventions.
He began this discourse--on the relationship of body and tattoo, a cultural and legal taboo in Korea--in his early works. The euphemism was made literal by reproducing tattoos on fake flesh. More recently, Kim Joon has employed a more polished manner and style, using traditional motifs, such as clouds, dragons and lambs, as reminders of traditional culture and values. Luxury brand labels are also mapped onto human figures: icons of western and materialistic cultures imprinted on our mindset. The confluence of the traditional and contemporary themes and ensuing issues of self and worth are at the center of Kim Joon’s practice.
In terms of methodology, Kim Joon uses an array of techniques to achieve a variety of moods and effects. Digital printing and use of film are essential; while utilization of 3D animation techniques provides exploratory intervals allowing for views of the shifting dynamic between host and the objects of desire.
Kai Teichert’s “Fountain of Youth”
Berlin-based artist, Kai Teichert, has taken inspiration from the mythological tale of the “Fountain of Youth,” which restores youth to anyone who drinks or bathes in its waters. His drawings and paintings play with nudity and include reference to the Hudson River School, as well as the aesthetics of old etchings.
Curated by Karl Erickson and Leo Kuelbs, 2014
“Submerged!” is composed of seven short video art pieces observing shifting mental interiors. Reactive visions of three short stories, written by Leo Kuelbs, are interpreted by teams of artists, resulting in a dynamic, multi-layered seascape of the psyche.
“Submerged!” has appeared in galleries and at events in Brooklyn, Budapest, Berlin; with Museum screenings in Los Angeles and Frankfurt.
Curator Leo Kuelbs has been a key part of dozens of exciting video, public art and marketing events in the past several years. Splitting time between New York and Berlin, The Leo Kuelbs Collection has presented several massive scale shows on public art sites like the Manhattan Bridge, as well as luxury brand marketing events for Dom Perignon, Tiffany and Company and Volkswagen in sites such as NYC’s Guggenheim Museum and the Baerensaal in Berlin. Single-channel video shows have also appeared, sometimes simultaneously, in multiple cities since 2011. His work has been covered in Vogue, Interview, Huffington Post and dozens of smaller blogs throughout Europe, Asia and the USA.