Works on Paper: Maria Farrar, Masanori Handa, Tsuyoshi Hisakado, Tang Dixin


Ota Fine Arts Shanghai is delighted to present "Works on Paper", an exhibition where paper is used as a common medium among four artists including Maria Farrar, Masanori Handa, Tsuyoshi Hisakado and Tang Dixin.


Maria Farrar's (b.1988) pastel drawings are imbued with bright and varied colors. The Covid-19 pandemic gave Farrar an opportunity to rediscover her love for pastels, in particular their ease of use and purity of colours. As lockdown restrictions prevail, she admits that her use of vibrant pastel colors is her form of protest against monotonous days and negative thinking. Pondering Farrar's work, one unknowingly slips into a playful world of seemingly real yet unreal settings. Leisurely days of walking down a row of shops to the bakery and bookstore, encounters at the British Museum, browsing through the wine selection at the local cellar, Farrar leaves her viewers wanting more of such imagery.

Tang Dixin (b. 1982) often depicts crowds of people in a humorous yet ruthless manner, hinting that they are perhaps inferior to beasts. For this exhibition, he continues to explore the human form with a limited palette of red and blue ink. The red and blue drawings are his largest ink on paper works till date. Tang has painted these works by applying ink directly onto paper with his fingers, which allows him to combine hard and soft strokes with greater immediacy, control and contrast. Blue was chosen as a background color and red was chosen for being opposite to blue, and it being a color with vitality. Like a grinning mask of humour, Tang illustrates the duality and contradictions found in human behavior.

With contrasting colours and multi-fold lines, Masanori Handa (b.1979) creates pictorial landscapes that are inspired by atmosphere, climate, psychogeography and fleeting encounters. While Handa is more commonly associated with large-scale immersive installations, these works on paper are an extension of his practice. With oil pastels and vibrant rich watercolours, Handa depicts the pine tree in "amacyan gayacyan ittcyan buncyan minna nakayoshi". Pine is known to represent longevity, goodness and virtue in Japanese culture, hence invoking feelings of goodwill and comfort as one views a landscape from a distance.

Elsewhere, Tsuyoshi Hisakado (b. 1981) showcases a series of works on paper. Appearing as blocks of monochrome and colour gradients from afar, the intricacies of his work are only revealed as one moves closer. The "Crossfades #4" series are composed of the π sequence extended across the sheet in a continuous spiral. The continuity of π is distorted when Hisakado adds ink, irregular lines and shapes to it, invoking subtle shifts in the concepts of space and eternity. Time and space, simultaneously collapse and continue in these works, revealing his poetic sensibilities through simple visual composition.

While works on paper can often be associated with study works or preparatory sketches, Ota Fine Arts Shanghai welcomes you to explore these works that hold a unique weight of their own.

Installation Views