古川 あいか Aika Furukawa was born in Aichi, Japan in 1982. She finished her studies at the Tokyo University of the Arts (Department of Oil Painting) in 2008. Between 2012 and 2015, she was a trainee in the programme of overseas study for upcoming artists from the Agency for Cultural Affairs of The Japanese Government and the Pola Art Foundation.
Furukawa uses linnen canvases and often engages with the exhibition space in a three-dimesional way. She lives and works in Tokyo and Leipzig.
Stadt Leipzig Kulturamt, Germany
Internationale Sommeratelier, Artist Scholarship, Aschersleben-Germany
Nomura Foundation Art and culture, Japanese Project Grant, Germany
Pola Art Foundation, Japanese Artist Grant, Germany
Agency for Cultural Affairs of The Japanese Government: Programme of Overseas Study for Upcoming Artists, Trainee, Germany
Honour Prize: 31st Sompo Japan Art Foundation, Selection encourages Exhibition
26th Holbein Scholarship, HOLBEIN Works,Ltd., Japanese Artist Scholarship
BankART Studio NYK: Artist in Residence Studio program, Yokohama-Japan
Honour Prize: Tokyo Wonder Wall 2011, Tokyo Metropolitan Government Bureau of Citizens Culture and Sports
Leipzig International Art Programme, Leipzig-Germany
Honour Prize: Tokyo Wonder Wall 2009, Tokyo Metropolitan Government Bureau of Citizens Culture and Sports
“The practice of Aika Furukawa, who works in Japan and Germany, is based on a methodology developed in Europe. She represents the mountains and valleys of textiles as shadows cast by their folds. At the same time, she is conscious of the humidity that permeates her objects, as some kind of Eastern element trough which symbolism and meaning emerge. In between these conflicting depictions of fabric, Furukawa appears as if she is trying to reclaim the clothed-concealed body both physically and conceptually through her methodology. By showing the body as a suggested, or as an actual existence, hidden or hiding underneath, the clothes are given a lively character through their various functions, such as to wrap, to conceal, etc. As I mentioned earlier, it is related to heavenliness similar to the expression of clouds on the ceiling of a church.
It can be said that Furukawa’s formative challenge is a new attempt to connect the Eastern methodology to the classical European painting. It is, at the same time, a way to connect the everyday life and the heavenly world within us.”
- Masahiko Haito, Chief curator of Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art -
“A first glance at Aika Furukawa’s paintings reveals to us the everyday remains of human transformations, shaped from such textiles as clothing, bed sheets or blankets, removed from their surroundings, hovering in space and arranged in seemingly logical patterns. If we look longer at the paintings/drawings, we seem to recognize landscapes: dramatic mountain ranges, raging seas or towering cloud formations, that could tear open at any time, releasing lightning and torrential rain. We become witnesses to overwhelming natural phenomena. Many of Furukawa’s works are unframed - a conscious deviation from a common practice of painters, that serves to separate the artistic space from the viewing space.
When looking at her paintings one is outside and inside at the same time. Furukawa’s space is a spiritual, an inner space - not the space of our sensory experiences, but one of contemplation. There is always a sense of being enshrouded, of protection. In the works of Aika Furukawa distance and proximity are both present as potential experiences.”
- Maximilian Rauschenbach, Art historian -