Interview with Yukino Omura – Contemporary Artist


Please introduce yourself.

My name is Yukino Omura. I’m a contemporary artist, my goal is to lead a new art trend in the world. I start to get media attention after I won Tokyo Midtown Award in 2012. I’ve been making urban night view paintings by stationary seals since 2010. I want to show the contrary monetary value and incongruity of mass consumption society by reproducing night view photographed at good location with cheap stationary seals.




Why did you chose night views as your art motif?

I’m from Yokohama, a place has lots of landmarks. I’ve been surrounded by night view since I was a child. However, I study abstract ideas and things in the art industry, I apt to avoid beauties such as night view or flowers because they are too straightforward. Nowadays, a trend of “what if I draw such thing, how will it look like?” is up.

In university, I was focusing on highly abstract paintings, then I realized the meaning of night view to me when I look into my own “beauty” and know my root again.

When I become an artist, I made up my mind to include this night view into my motif, even though an ordinary night view usually doesn’t have high evaluation in art industry. I’ve always wanted to be myself and draw this night view somewhere.

I don’t have any special techniques, also, talent and good skill is required as a painter, however, even you’re at the top of the art world, your works sell or not is a different story. I want to change the trend that only art with high technique will be evaluated. Not the kind of work that only this person can do it, but anyone else can.

But if anyone can do, You do not feel any anxiety about mimic?

In the world of art, whoever comes up with the initial/ original idea and announces it, he/she has the copyright of such idea from that point, and any imitations to this idea won’t be evaluated. Therefore, it is very important to announce new ideas continuously. My technique is not so special, also, I want my art to be approachable, I use easy and common techniques, make viewers think they can do the same, which is very interesting.
Seal is one thing which is very approachable. From children to elders, everyone is surprised that pictures can be made by seals. I make them feel they can do the same as well. It’s very interesting to offer this approachable feeling.

Why don’t you chose another art motif with this technique?

It’s important to focus on night view only. This kind of mosaic technique has been existing for a while. The reason I’m obsessed to night view is you can have an amazing effects by replacing only one light with a seal. For example, if the motif is people, it becomes just a mosaic image and only focus on technique part. Also, night view is a gorgeous and rich image that can be presented by cheap materials like seals, therefore, my question is what night view do people yearn for? What is the beauty of night view? Such kind of questions.
There may be an image that modern art is difficult to understand, actually it is a world of reading concepts and messages. I pay lots of attention on production time and techniques, and would like to make more efforts on the meaning and common beauty of my works.

Do you have any night view that you would like to make next?

Japan is my base, I’ll choose some popular places from this land. It has to be the night view that everyone knows, otherwise, viewers won’t have sympathy for it. I would like to try the busy streets of Shinjuku and Shanghai.

Can you give a short summary of the processes that go into each one?

The production process is to choose a photo as the base, then Photoshop it. Prepare a seal stamp which is the same size as the seal buy from the market beforehand, and paste it onto Photoshop one by one. Once it’s done on Photoshop, I present the final work on canvas by round seal which you can find in the market. Yukino_Ohmura016




I have heard that Japan has lack of opportunity for artists to show your works.

Not at all. First of all, galleries don’t have supports, there is no management established for art. In addition, this country is not proactive to art and people have such stereotype that art work is only available in art museums. Besides, the living space in Japan is very small, no extra space for art decorations, therefore, people are not use to buy art works. The trend that art works is belong to rich people is not very good. I hope artwork is something everyone can afford.

So can we buy your work?

Yes, of course. The price is set by gallery. My works are in young artists category, the price should be very reasonable.

How to treat the value of your artwork?

It’s priced on how good the concept is, the size, the time, the active period of the artist, how widely the work is known, market value and so on.

 Previously you have said that Japan is small market for Art. Do you have any plan to bring your artwork to the world market?

At the moment, a Hong Kong real estate company, Swireproperties, has requested a work one of my works. The client has a building at business centre, Island East. There is a gallery called art trees in the area, I would like to exhibit at there too after I delivered the work. In modern art market, Hong Kong plays an important role and shares a very big part of the market.
In Hong Kong, people are very used to buy art works from overseas, if they like the art work, they’ll consider whether to buy or not. On the contrary, we don’t have such culture in Japan, therefore, I’m keen on any chance that can present my works at world art fair.

Please give a perspective of Japanese art market.

Many problems exist in Japanese art policy. There is a huge gap between Japanese art and overseas modern art market, we have isolated ourselves from the rest of the world. One significant difference is, in Japan, modern/ contemporary art is regarded as asset management. People tend not to hold any art works to avoid fixed assets tax. However, outside of Japan, modern/ contemporary art is a popular business. I always bear this sense of danger in my mind. This is why I’m so keen on develop my art business overseas. In short, I have to find out where are the markets for my works and grope for the exhibition sites. I also think about putting my works onto the branch of Christie’s Auctions. Christie’s Auctions is one of two largest auction companies, will be a good start for gaining good publicity.

Please tell your future outlook.

I want to present my art works following the business market.
I try to find my own position while studying art management. Modern art is no longer pure art but is a money game as well. The most famous example is Takashi Murakami. Mr. Murakami’s works have high evaluation in art, he also knows market which involving complex management very well. His works worth more than billion yen.
That’s why I want my work can interact directly with the world.

You can see more her works at here