Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on February 2011

Courtesy of Galerie Sho
Nawajiri F50, oil on canvas

Masaya Yoshioka’s approach to art is simple. Working as a carpenter, the self-taught artist occasionally puts down his tools to pick up a paintbrush and depict the things that flash through his mind. Being a relatively young, red-blooded heterosexual male, those thoughts are often of naked ladies or couples in flagrante delicto. Using a fluid, lyrical style of oil painting, he depicts scenes that sometimes resemble pictures from porn mags, or juxtaposes copulating couples with banal backdrops, like the parking lot of a convenience store. This evokes the way that erotic thoughts often strike us at the most unlikely moments. So, is it art or porn? Probably both, but the porn element is somehow rendered artistic by the swirl of the brush and the sheen of the oils. “Niwaijiri” (Garden Fumbling) at Galerie Sho highlights the artist’s affinity with traditional shunga prints by presenting new works set in Japanese gardens.

Galerie Sho
Masaya Nishioka. Niwaijiri. Painting. Until Mar 12, free. B1F Sansho Bldg, 3-2-9 Nihombashi, Chuo-ku. Tel: 03-3275-1008. Open Mon-Fri 11am-7pm, Sat 11am-5pm, closed Sun & hols. Nearest stn: Nihombashi. www.g-sho.com