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Here is a little introduction to the paintings of Kazumi Nakamura. I've selected works from the series A Bird in Existence, which have a lot of texture and elegance. 


Kazumi Nakamura is a Japanese contemporary artist who began his career in the early 1980s, and has since become one of the most active painters among his generation, creating various styles of paintings that explore the meaning of pictorial space. Nakamura has declared his long-term goal as "the establishment of a form of painting that operates on a different dimension from the absoluteness, centeredness, wholeness, and purity of Western painting." 


A Bird In Its Existence:

Nakamura often incorporates symbols of flight in his work. Here is a statement he recently provided... translated from Japanese!



The A Bird in Its Existence paintings are meant to

stimulate thought about the general state of existence

through the form and conception of the “bird.” Birds

are flying beings. In ancient Japan they signified the

souls of ancestors who protect their descendants,

blessing people and bringing happiness. From the

peak of a mountain, a bird flies downwards. I

perceive this as an extension of the general state of



In the context of society or being alive, when we

confront these moments of swooping downward,

those things are perceived as being “in flight.”

Therefore, the A Bird in Its Existence paintings

transform negative things into positives. I have been

deeply influenced by the thinking of the 13th century

Zen priest, Dogen. According to him, reality and

paintings are equivalent to each other. Existence as

a painting means existence as reality.


The A Bird in Its Existence paintings are abstractions

that cross the formal characteristics and structures of

birds as living beings with the formal problems that

define the painted surface as inorganic matter. These

works are a complex combination of all the conditions

required to realize a painting: shape, color, material,

color penetration, brushwork, contour, and space

(depth, flatness, and the diagonally skewed sight

line). They are based on 5 basic matrices (mother

types). These matrices allow me to create paintings

of unlimited differentiation. I think that they also have

deep relationships with biological species or the

infinitely differentiated ways of the global



These five matrices are shown on the following

pages. The painting assigned to Art Basel was based

on the first matrix, but went through a gradual

process of change in form, so it is now different from

how it was at the beginning.


—Kazumi Nakamura

May 15, 2018

The works below are currently available, and pricing does not include fabrication and framing.

Please note that pricing and availability are subject to change. 

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