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Yoko Matsumoto


‘Colour determines form and form depends on colour’. The stance of the Japanese artist Yoko Matsumoto (松本 陽子) immerses us in the heart of her art, in which colours and forms are combined, creating a maelstrom that occupies the entire pictorial space.

Yoko Matsumoto was born in 1936 in Tokyo.  After the war she attended a school of art; during this period, she discovered Western painting and abstraction, which was already very popular in Japan.

At the end of the 1960s, she moved to New York, where she discovered painters such as Mark Rothko, Morris Louis, and Clyfford Still, who greatly influenced her pictorial work. She used acrylic paint which she applied to large-format works, a technique which provided her with new opportunities. Her paintings, which are freely executed and full of energy, draw their inspiration from natural elements light, water, and the wind.

Later in her career, she abandoned her approach inspired by the wind in favour of a more naturalistic form of expression, in which plants and water were at the centre of her work. New, darker colours and a less transparent facture propelled her art into a more earthly but equally dreamlike world.

Yoko Matsumoto is one of the major Japanese abstract artists who draw inspiration from Western art while expressing their oriental culture.

Personal exhibitions

2007 – Hino gallery, Tokyo, Japan

2005 – Hino gallery, Tokyo, Japan

2003 – Kimora Art Space, Tokyo, Japan

– Gallery Terashita, Tokyo, Japan

2002 – Akira Ikeda Gallery, Nagoya, Japan

2000 – Mitsubishi Matsuyama, Ehime, Japan

1999 – Akira Ikeda Gallery, Nagoya, Japan

1996 – Akira Ikeda Gallery, Nagoya, Japan

1993 – Ishiya-cho Gallery, Kyoto, Japan

1992 – Akira Ikeda Gallery, Nagoya, Japan

1991 – Muramatsu Gallery, Tokyo, Japan

– Goethe Institute Düsseldorf, Dusseldorf, Germany

1990 – Art Site, Fukui, Japan

1988 – Kamakura Gallery, Tokyo, Japan

1987 – Gallery Haku, Osaka, Japan

1986 – Kohji Ogura Gallery, Nagoya, Japan

1985 – Gallery Haku, Osaka, Japan

1983 – Gallery Haku, Osaka, Japan

1982 – Kamakura Gallery, Tokyo, Japan

1980 – Contemporary Art Laboratory, Tokyo, Japan

1978 – Koh Gallery, Tokyo, Japan

1977 – Shirota Gallery, Tokyo, Japan

1974 – Shirota Gallery, Tokyo, Japan

1972 – Flannel Gallery, Tokyo, Japan

1967 – Akiyama Gallery, Tokyo, Japan

1965 – Akiyama Gallery, Tokyo, Japan

1961 – Gallery Sato, Tokyo, Japan



Public exhibitions

– Okura Garden Hotel Shanghai, China

– Aichi Prefectural Museum, Japan

– Iwaki City Art Museum, Fukushima, Japan

– Museum of Modern Art, Kamakura & Hayama, Japan

– Ohara Museum of Art(Kurahiki), Japan

– National Museum of Art, Osaka, Japan

– Takamatsu Art Museum, Japan

– Tokyo National Museum of Modern Art, Japan

– Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo, Japan

– Fukuyama Museum of Art, Hiroshima, Japan

– Saito memorial Kawaguchi Museum of Contemporary Art, Saitama, Japan

Selected works