London-Tokyo-Nagasaki Prints and drawings by Chris Orr RA

Date: current – 11 December 2009
Venue: Daiwa Foundation Japan House, 13/14 Cornwall Terrace, London NW1 4QP UK
Organiser: Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation

The Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation is pleased to announce a solo show by Chris Orr, “LONDON-TOKYO-NAGASAKI”
Chris Orr RA has had many exhibitions worldwide including at the Whitechapel and Serpentine Galleries in London. He regularly shows his work at the Jill George Gallery and the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition. Last year, the special exhibition, ‘10’ 1998-2008 The Chris Orr Years, was held to celebrate his decade of successful career as Professor of Printmaking at the Royal College of Art. In 2008 he was awarded an MBE for services to the Arts.
“I was fortunate to go to Art School in England when the training was very much based on the traditional disciplines; life drawing, design and lettering, still life studies and painting from the landscape or cityscape in the open air. Working directly from the subject has recently become important to me again and on recent visits to Japan I have been outside drawing in Nagasaki and Tokyo. London, my native city, has always been an inspiration and a subject for me. I have developed the idea that I am a ‘history painter’ and that my work is concerned with the complex social and physical layers that compose the modern city. In the process of working, time is spent at the heart of a place. The artist takes on temporary honorary citizenship. It is amazing how many people stop to ask directions even when you are clearly not a local. Printmaking, a powerful tradition in both Japanese and European cultures, is a beautifully expressive voice for the subject of the city. The printing processes are urban and lend themselves easily to the subject matter. My prints are made using the drawings as a starting point. Back in the workshop I take things a step further on. Although still recognisably about a specific place, the printmaking process allows me to adapt and change things to create a new subjective identity. My Japan, like my London, becomes a place of new imaginative reality.”

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