Paintings by Minol Araki: Nature in Ink

23 July - 9 September 2020
  • Thomsen Gallery is pleased to present our second online viewing room, dedicated to paintings by Minol Araki (1928-2010), whose works...

    Thomsen Gallery is pleased to present our second online viewing room, dedicated to paintings by Minol Araki (1928-2010), whose works we exhibited in our New York gallery in 2012 and 2015.

     

    Minol Araki: Nature in Ink presents mature paintings by an artist who was devoted to creating art for its own sake.  Araki, by profession an industrial designer, rarely exhibited during his lifetime and was an unusual twentieth-century adherent to the Chinese and Japanese literati tradition which regarded artists as intellectuals. The exhibition presents 25 paintings of elements of nature, showing Araki’s masterful use of ink and his influences from China, Japan and the West.

     

    Araki's works are in the permanent collections of 19 museums including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco.

    • Minol Araki, Lotus, 1977
      Minol Araki, Lotus, 1977
    • Minol Araki, Lotus Pond, 1997
      Minol Araki, Lotus Pond, 1997
    • Minol Araki, Lotus, 2001
      Minol Araki, Lotus, 2001
    • Minol Araki, Lotus, 2000
      Minol Araki, Lotus, 2000
    • Minol Araki, Bamboo, 1977
      Minol Araki, Bamboo, 1977
    • Minol Araki, Three Fishes, 1977
      Minol Araki, Three Fishes, 1977
    • Minol Araki, Three Fishes, 1978
      Minol Araki, Three Fishes, 1978
    • Minol Araki, Crabs, 1976
      Minol Araki, Crabs, 1976
    • Minol Araki, Angry Fish, 1977
      Minol Araki, Angry Fish, 1977
    • Minol Araki, Fish and Coral, 1976
      Minol Araki, Fish and Coral, 1976
    • Minol Araki, Bamboo, 1977
      Minol Araki, Bamboo, 1977
    • Minol Araki, Bamboo and Rock, 1977
      Minol Araki, Bamboo and Rock, 1977
    • Minol Araki, Chinese Cabbage, 1978
      Minol Araki, Chinese Cabbage, 1978
    • Minol Araki, Chinese Cabbages and Mushrooms, 1978
      Minol Araki, Chinese Cabbages and Mushrooms, 1978
    • Minol Araki, Chinese Cabbages, 1979
      Minol Araki, Chinese Cabbages, 1979
    • Minol Araki, Table with Flower Vase, Platter of Cherries, and Lemons, 1977
      Minol Araki, Table with Flower Vase, Platter of Cherries, and Lemons, 1977
    • Minol Araki, Pumpkin, 2002
      Minol Araki, Pumpkin, 2002
    • Minol Araki, Flowering Plum Branch, 1977
      Minol Araki, Flowering Plum Branch, 1977
    • Minol Araki, Green Planter with White Flowers, 1989
      Minol Araki, Green Planter with White Flowers, 1989
    • Minol Araki, Desk with Flowers, 1977
      Minol Araki, Desk with Flowers, 1977
    • Minol Araki, Eggplants on Platter, 1978
      Minol Araki, Eggplants on Platter, 1978
    • Minol Araki, Peppers and Mushrooms, 1978
      Minol Araki, Peppers and Mushrooms, 1978
    • Minol Araki, Tossed Mushrooms, 2001
      Minol Araki, Tossed Mushrooms, 2001
    • Minol Araki, Tea Bowl and Platter with Fruit, 1978
      Minol Araki, Tea Bowl and Platter with Fruit, 1978
    • Minol Araki, Landscape, 2006
      Minol Araki, Landscape, 2006
  • Minol Araki (1928-2010)

    Artist Biography

    1928   Born in Dairen, Manchuria, China, to Japanese parents

    1935   Began studying brush painting with a local Chinese painter

    1945   Studied architecture at Nanman Kōsen (Southern Manchuria Technical College) in Dairen

    1945   Repatriated with his family to Japan, settling in Nagasaki

    1947   Resumed studies at Kuwazawa Design School, Tokyo

    1959   Started his first company, NOL Industrial Design, in Japan

    1960s Extensive travel to Europe, the United States, and Mexico

    1960s Started his second company, PIPa Corp., in the United States

    1973   First meeting with Chang Dai-chien in Taipei

    1977   Solo exhibition, Hong Kong City Hall Museum

    1978   Solo exhibition, National Museum of History, Taipei

    1980   Solo exhibition, National Museum of History, Taipei

    1981   Solo exhibition, Hong Kong City Hall Museum

    1982   Group exhibition: “Shigen-ten,” Tokyo Central Museum

    1982   Group exhibition: Eighth “Exposition France-Japon,” Paris

    1983   Group exhibition: Ninth “Exposition France-Japon,” Paris

    1999   Solo exhibition, National Museum of History, Taipei

    1999   Solo exhibition, Hong Kong Arts Centre

    1999   Solo exhibition, Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, AZ

    2001   Group exhibition, Pacific Asia Museum, Pasadena, CA

    2002   Solo exhibition, Morikami Museum, Delray Beach, FL

    2002   Solo exhibition, Indianapolis Art Museum, Indianapolis, IN

    2002   Solo exhibition, Clark Center for Japanese Art and Culture, Hanford, CA

    2005   First gallery exhibition, Gerald Peters Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

    2007   Second gallery exhibition, Gerald Peters Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

    2010   Died in Tokyo

    2012   Solo exhibition, Erik Thomsen Gallery, New York

    2015   Solo exhibition, Erik Thomsen Gallery, New York

    2017   Retrospective exhibition, Minneapolis Institute of Art, MN

    2020   Solo online exhibition, Thomsen Gallery, New York

     

    Public Collections Include

    Art Institute of Chicago

    Asian Art Museum, San Francisco

    Clark Center for Japanese Art and Culture, Hanford CA

    Cleveland Art Museum

    Denver Art Museum

    Hong Kong Museum of Art

    Indianapolis Museum of Art

    Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

    Minneapolis Institute of Arts

    Morikami Museum, Delray Beach FL

    Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

    National Museum of History, Taipei

    Philadelphia Museum of Art

    Phoenix Art Museum

    Saint Louis Art Museum

    San Antonio Art Museum

    USC Pacific Asia Museum, Pasadena CA

    Walters Art Museum, Baltimore

    Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven CT

     

    Minol Araki was born in Japanese-occupied Manchuria in 1928 to Japanese parents. As a child in China, he trained in traditional Chinese painting, but he turned his attention to graphic and industrial design after he was repatriated to Japan at the end of World War II. In Tokyo in the 1950s and early 60s, he studied with Japan’s leading modernist designers and associated with the postwar Tokyo avant-garde. A successful designer, Araki went on to establish a network of design studios in the 1960s, work that took him to cities throughout Asia and North America. In his forties, he first met and took as his painting mentor Zhang Daqian (1899–1983), considered the preeminent Chinese traditionalist painter of the modern age. Araki’s creative zenith came after Zhang’s death in 1983; over the following decade he created five monumental paintings that both demonstrate his mastery of Zhang’s trademark techniques and signal a shift toward modern Japanese painting techniques, an interest explored most fully in the last decade of his life. Araki’s work was exhibited at galleries in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Santa Fe, and New York, and in a traveling exhibition at the National Museum of History in Taipei, Taiwan, and the Phoenix Art Museum in 1999.