We are very pleased to present the work of Vancouver artist Taiga Chiba in his fourth solo exhibition, Entr’acte, at Art Beatus (Vancouver) Consultancy Ltd. As a globetrotting and bibulous observer of the world, Chiba‘s work has been shaped and influenced by his extensive travels. Using serigraph printing, Japanese brush and ink painting with natural dyes, embroidery and drawing with pencil and ballpoint pen, the mixed media work featured in this exhibition has been especially inspired by the artist’s numerous trips to India and Mexico.
Born in Shizuoka, Japan, Taiga Chiba studied in Tokyo at Atelier Furan Art School in Drawing and Colour Composition and at Musashino Art University, earning a Bachelor of Arts from the Plastic Arts program. In 1981, he immigrated to Canada and in 1986, he completed a Master of Fine Arts in Studio Arts at Concordia University in Montreal. For over 30 years, Chiba has exhibited extensively locally and internationally, been the recipient of several awards and grants, and has participated in numerous artist residencies around the world. His work can be found in various public and private collections in North America, Asia and Europe.
The French word entr’acte means “between acts” or an intermission at a theatrical performance, such as a play or a ballet. In Chiba‘s case, he refers to the small, often comedic, performance in between acts in Japanese Noh theatre that is completely separate in narrative and emotional tone than the more serious main play. Similar to being between acts, the artist also conceptualizes his creative process and artwork in this series as being “between two Mayas”, in which both are influenced by Maya, the Hindu goddess of visions and illusions, and the Maya civilization of Mesoamerica.
As Chiba draws on these two “Mayas” for inspiration via his observations, experiences and imagination, this body of work is still characteristic of his charm and style – colourful, expressive and playful with an earnest fascination and celebration of the quotidian and the exotic. These mixed media works have a surrealist-like synthesis and juxtaposition of disparate elements and they have a synesthetic quality that invokes the sumptuous sights, sounds and smells of these two great cultures.