Kazuo Shiraga  (Japanese, 1924-2008) 

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Kazuo Shiraga (Japanese, 1924–2008) was a painter and performance artist born in Amagasaki, Japan. Shiraga graduated from the Kyoto City Specialist School of Arts (now the Kyoto City University of Arts) in 1948, having studied traditional Japanese painting. He was later inspired by modern Western techniques, and in 1952, co-founded the Zero Group with artists Akira Kanayama, Saburo Murakami, and Atsuko Tanaka. The group was so named for the belief that works of art are created out of nothing. In 1955, Shiraga joined the renowned Gutai Art Association, a group of artists primarily focused on attaining genuine originality and innovation in artwork. That same year, he performed one of his best known works, Challenging Mud, in which he struggled and writhed to the point of exhaustion in a muddy mixture of several tons of clay and concrete. Inspired by the works and dynamic technique of Jackson Pollock, Shiraga's preferred method of painting involved applying ample amounts of oil paint to large sheets of paper or canvas on the floor, and manipulating the paint with only his feet while suspended from a rope attached to the ceiling. Through his movements, some choreographed, others spontaneous, Shiraga created vibrant, unique paintings throughout his lengthy career. In 1971, Shiraga became a Buddhist monk, a lifestyle decision that did not interrupt his productivity. His work has been exhibited at many venues around the world, including the 2009 Venice Biennale, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, CA, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and McCaffrey Fine Art in New York, NY.

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Artworks for sale (18)

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Kazuo Shiraga, Hachiko-Ooji

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Hachiko-Ooji
1984

Axel Vervoordt Gallery
Kazuo Shiraga, Untitled

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Untitled
1962

Axel Vervoordt Gallery
Kazuo Shiraga, Untitled (set of 7 works)

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Untitled (set of 7 works)
1990

Auction: Apr 28, 2014
Phillips New York
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Kazuo Shiraga, Untitled

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Untitled
1981

Compagnia dell'Arte
Kazuo Shiraga, Shintan

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Shintan
1989

McCaffrey Fine Art
Kazuo Shiraga, Untitled

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Untitled
1990

Compagnia dell'Arte
Kazuo Shiraga, Koheki

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Koheki
1990

McCaffrey Fine Art
Kazuo Shiraga, Untitled

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Untitled
circa 1975

Sakurado Fine Arts
Kazuo Shiraga, Akazome

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Akazome
1993

Tezukayama Gallery
Past auction results (330)  View All
Kazuo Shiraga, Work

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Work, 1980
watercolor on paper

 

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Kazuo Shiraga, Work

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Work
oil on canvas laid on panel

 

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Kazuo Shiraga, Haten

 

Kazuo Shiraga
Haten, 1990
oil on canvas

 

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1924   Born in Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture
1942 - 1948   Attended Kyoto Municipal School of Painting where he was given no option but to study traditional Japanese-style painting
1948   Attended City Art Centre, Osaka where he studied the fundamentals of oil painting and joined the New Creation Art Association
1952   Formed the 'Zero' group with Saburo Murakami and Akira Kanayama
1955   Zero group merges with the Gutai Art Association. The 'Gutai Group' as it became known exhibited both in Japan and internationally until its dissolution in 1972
1957   First meeting with the French art critic, Michel Tapié, who developed the theory of 'L'art Informel'. Tapié subsequently arranged opportunities for members of the Gutai Group to show their work in Europe (including their participation the the 'Nul' exhibition at the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam in 1965 and in USA at the Martha Jackson Gallery, New York in 1958)
1965   Awarded the Amagasaki Citizen's Cultural Prize
1971   Entered the Buddhist priesthood at the Enryaku Temple Mount Hiei
1987   Awarded the Hyogo Prefectural Cultural Prize
1999   Awarded the Distinguished Service Medal for Culture