You may find that the quantity of my released works doesn’t reflect the standard urge to create, when comparing with other flourishing artists. Artists, looking for a gallery to exhibit their work, make submissions to public exhibitions. In the case of illustrators, they make themselves known through various media, such as magazines. To me, this is a path that leads away from art. My primary client and audience is myself. Showing my work to others is secondary. Of course, I find enjoyment in showing my work; however, the mission that drove me was one of self-accomplishment, rather than one of comparison to others. This is a training that goes beyond a mere hobby. It is the background that fuels my current creative activities.

It goes without saying that many of my works include occult motifs. The work before me starts with an inner question. This question extends from my own self and reaches into the world that surrounds me. Moreover, figments of doubt are scattered in the world around us. If they are only captured by a world ruled by business, they will surely be lost. Our purpose on earth, the meaning of life, the reason for our existence… these are questions people have no clear answers for. In other words, every phenomenon still holds a facet that belongs to the occult. The occult encompasses all things. Does any other material offer such innumerous possibilities? Archeological relics are a prime example of delusion-driving devices. With only the hint of a story, the human inquisitive mind races, thinking of multilateral possibilities, with disregard for prejudice or common sense. In fact, my artwork embodies this principle: the expansive action of an image sparked by an initial inquiry.

However, many of my works do not include the dark connotations often associated with the word ‘occult’. Firstly, there is no need for it. The use of occult as a theme need not be treated with skepticism or suspicion, like conspiracy theories or black magic, if you look at it from a contemporary point of view. Secondly, creating negative emotions from art can lead people in power to use the media to influence the collective unconscious, much like the course of events foreshadowing a war. This is the story of a particular approach, not the story of my influence. Thirdly, even though the subject matter may be occult, the themes I have cultivated throughout my life, such as subculture, design, and sense of humor are reflected positively in my work.
In this sense, even though my work comes from a tortuous background, people can feel proximity to the subject through friendly and familiar scenes. Differences of opinion on how ideas were expressed in my work are welcome. I create art as a simple interpretive entertainer. I merely aim to spark people’s intellectual curiosity.

 

​Koushin Yamada