Beginning October 12th, Venus Over Manhattan will debut Jack & Venus, an exhibition of new paintings by New York-based Japanese artist Susumu Kamijo, at the gallery’s 55 Great Jones Street. This presentation comprises one part of a two-venue show: Jack Hanley Gallery will simultaneously open an exhibition under the same title in its TriBeCa space. Kamijo is critically admired for graphic compositions featuring abstracted poodles as vehicles for an ongoing exploration of pattern, color, and sur- face. With the works in Jack & Venus, the artist has incorporated new components—birds and foliage—expanding his deceptively charming visual vocabulary. The group of eleven vivacious paintings on view at Venus have been executed in a horizontal format— another shift in Kamijo’s approach—and with the artist’s delightfully expressionistic brushwork.
While Kamijo’s new series finds the artist continuing to depict his favorite canine protagonists in dynamic arrangements, the works are marked by purer swaths of color that underscore the organic forms and innate geometry Kamijo mines. The combination of these more concentrated hues with wider swaths of visible canvas overlayed with clear gesso, allows subtler elements to come to the fore. Delicate paint drips, fevered brushstrokes, and exuberant gestural markings coexist in profound harmony. A salient and beautiful sense of formal equilibrium exists amongst all the works in this new series, derived from Kamijo’s canny balancing of airy composition and raw painterly expression.
By expanding his imagery to include birds, vegetation, bodies of water, and celestial points, Kamijo here creates new opportunities to conjure the potential of his chosen medium. With their spectacularly variegated wingtips, tailfeathers and bills, his birds—coupled with increasingly abstracted images of the artist’s familiar poodles—the artist has endowed his latest series fresh visual dynamism.
About the artist ~ Susumu Kamijo was born in 1975 in Nagano, Japan. He received a BFA from the University of Oregon in 2000, and an MFA from the University of Washington in 2002. Kamijo’s work has been the subject of numerous solo presentations both stateside and abroad, including recent exhibitions at Perrotin, Seoul; GNYP Gallery, Berlin; Harper’s, East Hampton; Marvin Gardens, Queens; and Stems Gallery, Brussels. His work frequently features in major group exhibitions, including recent presentations at Carl Kostyal, Stockholm; The Pit, Los Angeles; Alexander Berggruen Gallery, New York; Rod Barton, London; and Harper’s, East Hampton. Kamijo lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.
Susumu Kamijo: Jack & Venus will be on view from October 12 to November 11, 2022 at Venus Over Manhattan, 55 Great Jones Street, NYC. An Opening Reception will be held on Tuesday, October 18th from 6-8pm.
Susumu Kamijo at Jack Hanley Gallery on view from October 19 to November 23, 2022. Jack Hanley Gallery is located at 177 Duane Street in TriBeCa.