Media: Digital art
hand-signed by artist, and dated
“Beauty moves me, it hits me in the heart, but this is not enough for me:
I want to understand at all costs how to get there.” (Enzo Mari)
The words of designer Enzo Mari perfectly describe the purpose of an artist, whether he is a painter, sculptor, designer, stylist: the search for beauty and the way to convey it to others. And only those who get excited can express and carry that emotion in their expressive medium.
The Japanese artist Yasue KOBE dedicates the work presented here, entitled “Cat’s Talk Milano”, to the great Enzo Mari, an old friend of her, and to the city of Milan, the capital of design. This work is part of the series of works “Cat’s talk” with which the artist, as she herself stated, wants to express the concept that we are often so taken up by everyday life that we do not take the time to reflect on who we are and where we are going. Each of us should take moments for ourselves, to be alone with ourselves and reflect on our own life.
The cat’s eyes look at us, they stare at us from everywhere, and if we look the cat straight in the eye, according to the artist we can see ourselves in their reflection. Yes, because sometimes to really see each other, we have to look at each other with someone else’s eyes. Sometimes we are too hard on ourselves, but we should more and more often stop, look at ourselves from the outside with the eyes of someone who loves us, and finally see the small and large, extraordinary things that we manage to do every day.
The influences of abstractionism and pop art are clearly visible in this work. With a few simple lines, in fact, Yasue is able to give us the recognisable image of the cat, indeed she does much more, she gives life to an emblematic expression, which manages to communicate the message on its own.
The strong and bright colors, which emanate a disruptive energy, even more accentuated by the choice of a black background, represent all the colors and shades of the light spectrum: because each of us is made up of a thousand shades, a thousand faces and a thousand different ways of looking at the world around it.
–Silvia Grassi, Art Curator
This work is in homage to Yasue’s old friend from Milan, Enzo Mari (1932-2020) a maestro of design who created iconic products, sculptures, and installations that represent true milestones in the history of Italian design.
Yasue met with Enzo Mari many times when he visited Tokyo for his projects in Japan.
Yasue’s “Cat’s Talk” works are widely known in Japan having been displayed in Tokyo, Chiba, Kyoto, Osaka, and Fukuoka, as well as a special exhibition in Santander in Spain.
She believes strongly that art is to be shared and enjoyed by all, and therefore has often chosen public spaces for her works: including banks, universities, offices, station buildings, cafes, and restaurants. The underlying concept of Cat’s Talk is communication and self-realization. We are often so busy with our work and everyday lives we don’t take time to reflect on who we are and where we are going.
In the reflection of the eyes of her ubiquitous cats we see ourselves…
While studying at New York University in the ’80s and ’90s, Yasue was strongly influenced by pop art, abstractionism, and installation art.
Yasue organized several live “portrait” performances and a live painting with jazz musicians in a Tokyo restaurant.
In her more recent series of landscape paintings, she explores many iconic landmarks and scenes from around the world, capturing the emotions she feels in bold and striking colours.