Chiho Aoshima

21 October 2006 - 28 January 2007

In her first UK solo show Chiho Aoshima presents her intricate fantasy worlds of zombies and fairies, rainbows and tsunamis, urban landscapes and nature. From a confrontation with a gigantic wave of destruction to a journey through her imaginary world from the perspective of a worm, Aoshima’s fantasy worlds suggest a multitude of possibilities. Chiho Aoshima is a digital artist. She perfects her work on the computer using the software Illustrator and then prints it in a variety of forms including large-scale murals.

In the past, these murals have been installed in places such as advertising spaces, gallery walls and even complete rooms. Chiho Aoshima’s work can be described as combination of manga and traditional Japanese scroll painting. The artist is associated with the superflat movement, a contemporary Japanese art movement reflecting the two-dimensionality in contemporary Japanese pop culture.

The combination of nature and culture is one of the substantial elements in Aoshima’s work which often reflects her concerns about global patterns of abnormal weather. In Magma Spirit Explodes. Tsunami is Dreadful (2004), a candy coloured, gigantic wave of magma with a girl’s face carries a wave of destruction and faces a fire-spitting mirror reflection of herself. This piece is a chromogenic reproduction of Aoshima’s largest wallpaper piece to date, originally presented at the Carnegie Museum of Art.

In addition to this apocalyptical scenery, BALTIC shows a series of the artist’s prints. City Glow (2005) is an animated version of Chiho Aoshima’s work. This seven minute long journey plays across five flat-panel screens located in BALTIC’s ground floor gallery space. Produced in collaboration with animation director Bruce Ferguson, it takes us on a fantastical trip in which we see the transformation of nature, seasons and life and allows us to forge our own way through Aoshima’s magical landscape.

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