Nobuo Kubota: Hokusai Revisited

June 5 to July 18, 2010

During the summer months in Kelowna it is natural to develop a heightened awareness of the huge presence and proximity of Okanagan Lake. What more appropriate exhibition would there be, therefore, than this single, large installation of a giant wave form, made from wood? Toronto-based, senior Canadian artist Nobuo Kubota (b. 1932) salutes the 19th Century printmaker Katsushika Hokusai and his famous print, The Great Wave off Kanagawa, in this work titled Hokusai Revisited. Playing over the elements of the wooden form will be video projections of cascading, coloured waves, giving the work a full and mesmerizing sense of life and motion.

Kubota was trained as an architect in Toronto. After working in that field for ten years, he gradually came to the realization that he needed to pursue his own inner artistic vision. He then began exhibiting work that involved sculptural installations, as well as sound components. In 1970 he traveled to Japan for a year to delve into that part of his identity, and lived as a novice monk in a Buddhist monastery – which greatly influenced his work as an artist. Kubota was an integral member of the neo-Dada scene that centred around Toronto ’s Isaacs Gallery in the late 1960s and early 1970s. He played alto sax in the Artists’ Jazz Band, whose members were other artists from the Isaacs stable. In the 1980s and 1990s he added mime and dance to his repertoire when creating performance works.

Nobuo Kubota was given a solo show at the Kelowna Art Gallery in 1999 called The Exploration of Possibility. He performed a memorable sound piece at the opening event for this show. We are extremely pleased to be welcoming him back here eleven years later, and are delighted he will be performing here once again.

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