Makiko Kudo
I See Season
Oil on canvas
259.5 x 389 cm

Makiko Kudo turns the Romantic association of landscape with human emotion - and its privileging of the irrational, uexplainable, and spiritual - into a vehicle for a language of the personal. She depicts what she has “unconsciously witnessed in reality”1, turning her inner landscape into a sprawling and dense painted realm.

As in the theory of the pastoral, Kudo’s natural world is associated with childhood. As Tomio Koyama Gallery asserts, “her motifs released from memories and personal experiences give an impression that weighs on the hearts of the viewers, precisely as if we ourselves are experiencing a great undulation of sensitivity with our half-forgotten childhood memories”1.

I am intrigued by what I see as a thread running through feminine-associated principles of valuing the intuitive and irrational, the Romantic, nature and childhood. This prism through which to interpret the world, employed by women artists like Kudo, could provide a feminist future for painting.

1. Tomio Koyama Gallery, “’Turning’ Exhibition Catalogue Author Profile (Makiko Kudo)”, Tomio Kayama Gallery <> [Accessed 8 March 2020]