TCB Inc. Art invites Masato Takasaka, a Melbourne-based artist, known for both his performances as a lead guitarist in über-hip rock bands as well as his visual art practice. Takasaka thinks about his studio practice in musical terms, describing his aesthetic as an iPod Shuffle on endless repeat: playing the greatest hits of 20th century avant-garde art, with references to constructivism, dada, pop and minimalism alongside the back catalogue of his own greatest hits.
Primarily working with found objects and materials to construct his gallery based installations, art and design histories collide in Takasaka’s mini-cities. Described as “techno-contemporary”, the exuberant chaos of his sculptural practice involves a process of working and re-working everyday materials in inventive ways to make something new. The bent, crumpled and endlessly interacting surfaces of Takasaka’s work explore limitless formal possibilities and combinations.
Returning to painting after a twenty year hiatus Garage Days Re-revisited comprises a suite of fifteen paintings that re-examines the artist’s early explorations into hard edge geometry, form and colour. These new paintings revisit the seminal works made during his last year of high school that were created in his parent’s suburban garage where they remain on display. Curator and writer David Homewood who is familiar with Takasaka’s practice comments “the idea of remaking those high school works has a melancholic dimension that is compelling to me”.
In dialogue with the artist, Homewood compares Takasaka’s works to a 1969 Dale Hickey hard edge painting, which was based on an amateur painting seen on the front of a suburban garage door. Later, in his ‘postmodernist phase,’ Hickey similarly revisited his own back catalogue, embedding a version of the same garage door design in a ‘meta-painting’. Takasaka’s own ‘meta-paintings’ extend from this practice of recycling previous works to generate new work which in turn forms part of his art historical research into the culture of appropriation.
Masato Takasaka completed a Bachelor of Fine Art (Hons) at the Victorian College of the Arts in 1999 and his PhD at Monash University in 2014. Recent exhibitions include TarraWarra Biennial 2016: Endless Circulation, TarraWarra Museum of Art, Healesville, 2016; Rose Coloured Glass, The Honeymoon Suite, Brunswick, 2016; Garage Days Revisited, Sutton Gallery, Melbourne, 2016; Channel G as part of Transmission: Legacies of the Television Age, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 2015; 3-Ply Remote Residency, The Stool, Good Press Gallery, Glasgow, 2014; Don’t Kurt Cobain, Slopes, Melbourne, 2014; Melbourne Now, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 2013; Roppongi Crossing 2013: OUT OF DOUBT, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, 2013; Reinventing the Wheel: the Readymade Century, Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne, 2013; A Space Oddity, Linden Centre for Contemporary Arts, Melbourne, 2013; Third/ fourth Melbourne artist-facilitated Biennial, Margaret Lawrence Gallery, Melbourne, 2013; ALMOST EVERYTHING ALL AT ONCE, TWICE, THREE TIMES (In Four Parts…), Gertrude Contemporary, Melbourne, 2012; NETWORKS (cells and silos), Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne, 2011; New Psychedelia, University of Queensland Art Museum, Brisbane, 2011; Post-logical Form, Contemporary Art Centre of South Australia, Adelaide, 2011 and Cubism and Australian Art, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne, 2009. As part of the artists’ group Inverted Topology was included in Minus Space at PS1 Contemporary Art Centre, New York, 2009; SNO, Sydney, 2007 and + Plus Factors, Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne, 2006.
Image: Masato Takasaka | Untitled #4 (garage days revisited 1994), Pencil & acrylic on canvas, 2006
Photo credit: Christo Crocker2016