leased to announce Memories, a solo exhibition by August Vilella, on view at the historic mansion kudan house, Tokyo. Suiting the building’s rich historical background, this exhibition embodies August’s ability to create works that incorporate contemporary styles into classical art.
The presented works are the manifestation of the artist’s imagination, resulting in a group of dreamlike characters drawn with hyperrealistic details. His cartoonish characters are painted with elaborate and technical brushstrokes that recall the works of old masters, yet his creative process is entirely intuitive and improvisational. The audience are encouraged to see his works as an opportunity to engage with their subconscious and explore their deeper emotions.
Similar to August’s artistic style that fuses contemporary with classical art, the exhibition space also reflects the unifying of the old and new. The kudan house, built in 1927, is the former residence of wealthy businessman Mankichi Yamaguchi and is admired for its fascinating combination of Japanese and Spanish architecture. It is also the embodiment of a miracle for its long history in withstanding tumultuous times, such as surviving World War II whilst most of the city was severely damaged. In May 2018, the property was registered as “Tangible Cultural Property” in the Cultural Property registry. Since then, the kudan house has been an example of protecting and reinventing cultural legacy by being the voice of new culture in Japan and globally.
We are honoured to be present August’s work in one of the rarest and most unique architectural sites in Tokyo. We also hope that his work will not only encourage audiences to reflect upon their memories but also on the exceptional history of the kudan house.