I finally had the chance to see Tokio Aoyama’s The Loop first hand at the private view last night and it confirmed my suspicions that you don’t have to drop acid to enjoy the exuberant technicolor of Tokio’s work. In fact, the colours seemed all the more vibrant on the night, standing out from the rustic interior of the gallery; a welcome change from the blanket of cold white.
The Dogu series recreates the small statues into Behemoths that tower above detailed rural and urban Japanese landscapes. If you are a ‘Where’s Wally?’ fan, see if you can spot the flying saucers in the images. The paintings beautifully draw together traditional and contemporary Japanese culture, the Dogu symbolising the grand traditions of Japan in situ with it’s modern landscapes.
However, it is the Afrocentrism of his work that creates a paradigm shift in the contemporary focus of art in East End galleries. In an area where there is a fusion of global cultures, Tokio’s style of art is the closest emulation of the now indigenous Asian and Black cultures. This sense of cultural harmony is the essence of Tokio’s collaboration with artists who are working together for the ascension of universal unity through art and music.
You’ll need to fix yourself a decent mixtape to accompany you through the exhibition; a soundtrack that should include some Coultrain, Cypress Hill and Jimi Hendrix. Whatever you choose to sync with your iPod, get over to the Hoxton Gallery before the exhibition comes to an end on the 11th August.