Solo Exhibition by Keita Morimoto at KOTARO NUKAGA

From November 20 to December 25, 2021, KOTARO NUKAGA, is presenting ‘After Dark,’ a solo exhibition by Keita Morimoto. After 15 years in Canada, the artist has returned to Japan this year to unveil 21 new paintings at his first ever solo exhibition in his home country.


Keita Morimoto, Bathing Light, 2021

Keita Morimoto first began learning painting when he moved to Canada at the age of 16. He is particularly attracted to the techniques and compositions of classical painting, and by combining perfectly controlled expressions of light reminiscent of Baroque period paintings with motifs of everyday scenes from contemporary society, Morimoto forms an eclectic combination that allows him to open up his own original approach to realism. His ability to create beauty and mystique out of ordinary, unremarkable landscapes, together with his method of constructing personal narratives featuring anonymous protagonists, positions him within the lineage of magic realism represented by such artists as Edward Hopper and Peter Doig. At the same time, his dispassionate view of contemporary society introduces viewers to a brand new perspective.


Keita Morimoto, Last Train, 2021

Light is an element that has fascinated people such as Rembrandt throughout art history, and has often been as treated as mystical and religious. In the series of works shown in this exhibition, Morimoto expands upon this motif of "light” to include not only natural and sacred phenomena but also the light which attracts people in today’s consumerist society, such as vending machines, fast food restaurants, and electric signs in parking lots, depicting our everyday experience of the 21st century. His nighttime scenes purposefully evade iconic symbols that could be used to identify them as specific locations. Overlooked corners within the blindingly bright Tokyo cityscape, local train stations with few passengers, and familiar hilltops that you swear you’ve seen before somewhere but can’t remember where… Morimoto inserts unidentifiable figures into these unremarkable places, and depicts them in controlled light. In this way, Morimoto shines a light on the transit points-- the “anonymous places”-- of our daily lives, and through the contrast of darkness and light, creates a "heterotopia," a place where we can temporarily escape from the real world.


Keita Morimoto, After Light, 2021

Keita Morimoto Profile

Born in Osaka in 1990, Morimoto immigrated to Canada in 2006 at the age of 16, and spent the following 16 years in Toronto before returning to Japan in 2021. He is currently based in Tokyo. He completed high school in Canada at Centennial Secondary School in Belleville, Ontario, and received his BFA from the Ontario College of Art (now OCAD University) in 2012. His work has been exhibited in Canada, the U.K. and the U.S., including at the Museum of Contemporary Art Toronto Canada (MOCA) and the Nicholas Metivier Gallery in Toronto. He has more than 55 thousand Instagram followers witch proves his popularity throughout the world.


Keita Morimoto

Keita Morimoto, ‘After Dark’ Exhibition Details

DateNovember 20 (Sat) - December 25 (Sat), 2021
Time11:00-18:00 (Tue - Sat) *Closed on Sun, Mon and Public Holidays