• Asobi: Japanese & Korean Postw auction at Christies

    Sale 13430

    Asobi: Japanese & Korean Postwar Art

    11 October 2016, London, King Street

  • Lot 84

    Tadashi Sugimata (1914 - 1994)

    Fall (3-A, 3-B, 3-C)


    Tadashi Sugimata (1914 - 1994)
    Fall (3-A, 3-B, 3-C)
    each work signed Tadashi Sugimata in English and Japanese, titled In (Fall) 3-A, 3-B, 3-C and dated 1985.6 (on the reverse)
    oil on canvas
    Each 193.9 x 162.1 cm.
    (3)Painted in 1985

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    Tadashi Sugimata was born in Tokyo in 1914. He graduated from the Tokyo School of Fine Arts in 1938 and his early artistic style was influenced by Surrealism. In 1939 he was one of the founding members of Bijutsu Bunka Kyokai [Art and Culture Association], an association of anti-war surrealist painters and poets. The Second World War brought much upheaval and Sugimata’s two brothers, as well as other artist friends were killed, and many of his earlier works were destroyed. The Bijutsu Bunka Kyokai was suppressed during the war, with some of its members imprisoned. Sugimata left the group in 1953 and from then on worked independently and focused on showing his work in solo exhibitions, Japanese contemporary art exhibitions or international exhibitions such as the Venice and San Paulo Biennales.

    In the mid-1950s, his painting style developed to become more abstract, possibly absorbing some influences of Informal which had spread rapidly with the help of the French art-critic Michel Tapié. From around 1960, a hexagonal shape started to appear in his works and this became his signature subject, producing paintings but also collage and sculpture.

    Sugimata taught oil painting in Tokyo University of the Arts from 1977 to 1981. In 1982, he held a solo show, Deguchi, Iriguchi [Exit, Entrance] at Gallery Ueda and Tokyo Gallery and this exhibition ushered in a new phase of artistic development. His work from this time was occupied by abstract spheres and hexagons which float in space.

    Sugimata’s work reflects an inner questioning and is imbued with inward reflection; a sense of loss and loneliness. Fall (3-A, 3-B, 3-C), 1985 is a quietly powerful work of monumental scale from his mature period.

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    Himeji City Museum of Art, Sugimata Tadashi ten, exhibition catalogue, (Tokyo, 1999), cat. no. 83, p. 108


    1999: Sugimata Tadashi ten, Himeji City Museum of Art, Hyogo; Niigata City Art Museum; Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art, Fukuoka; and Tsukuba Museum of Art, Ibaraki