THE INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ART/BOSTON

An elegant and energetic fusion of opposing forces, The Divine Gas invites viewers into Aoshima's fantastical daydream.

Chiho Aoshima, a Tokyo-born, largely self-taught artist, is known for digitally-rendered drawings, animations, sculptures, and large-scale murals. Drawn on a Macintosh G4 computer and printed on adhesive vinyl, the murals often shift dramatically in perspective and scale and combine vibrant colors and botanical details in graphic, dream-like scenes of supernatural worlds and their inhabitants.

The Divine Gas, Aoshima's work for the ICA, depicts a giant girl lying in a lush landscape. The setting seems idyllic and serene-butterflies flutter, a deer nestles near her foot, a couple frolics hand-in-hand. Meanwhile, a billowing cloudscape, lorded over by a genie creature, emerges from her bottom. A few figures sit nestled in the clouds, while others tumble toward the ground. Like an updated version of Hieronymus Bosch's Garden of Earthly Delights (c. 1500), the mural is mysterious tale of good and evil. An elegant and energetic fusion of opposing forces—beauty and darkness, the natural and supernatural, humor and earnestness—The Divine Gas invites viewers into Aoshima's fantastical daydream.

Chiho Aoshima was born in 1974 in Tokyo, Japan, where she currently lives and works. She received a degree in economics from Hosei University in Tokyo. Aoshima has created a piece for New York's Union Square Subway Station as part of Takashi Muramaki's recent exhibition Little Boy: The Arts of Japan's Exploding Subculture at the Japan Society. She has also been included in numerous group exhibitions including the 54th Carnegie International, Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh; Superflat at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles in 2001; and an exhibition at the UC Berkeley Art Museum, Berkeley, California, in 2003. Her work is in the collections of the Ackland Art Museum, Chapel Hill, North Carolina; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; and the Seattle Art Museum.

The Sandra and Gerald Fineberg Art Wall is dedicated to monumental, site-specific works by leading contemporary artists, commissioned annually.

 

Funding for The Divine Gas has been provided by the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation and The Japan Foundation New York Office.


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