Auction | China Guardian (HK) Auctions Co., Ltd.
2023 Spring Auctions > Asian 20th Century and Contemporary Art
Asian 20th Century and Contemporary Art

Miwa Komatsu (b.1984)
Sounds of Festival(Painted in 2020)

Acrylic on paper mounted on board

146 × 112.1cm. 57 1/2 × 44 1/8 in.

Signed in English and dated on bottom right
Whitestone Gallery, Hong Kong
Acquired directly by present private Asian collector from the above

This work is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity issued by Whitestone Gallery, Hong Kong

A Symphony of God and Nature
The Artistic Moment of Miwa Komatsu

Growing up in the mountains of Nagano Prefecture, she had the experience of caring for endangered animals since she was a child, which enabled her to see “species unseen by others” and to have a dialogue with all kinds of creatures in nature. Influenced by her grandfather, a calligrapher, Komatsu loves to draw and paint, incorporating the birds, animals, and dogs she sees and feels, as well as the local tribal totems, to create the divine beasts, which is now her most famous theme. Her colorful and powerful works conceal a heart of reverence for nature that resonates.

A Modern Transmission of the Spirit of the East 

In 2014, at the age of 30, Komatsu's Shin-Fudoki was honored with a dedication at the Izumo-Taisha in Japan; in the following year, Guardian Lion Dog was exhibited at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show in London and subsequently collected by the British Museum, where it became the youngest artist in the collection at the time. 2016, her live painting The Origin of Life was collected by the World Trade Center in New York. Her philosophy is pure: Komatsu believes she is conveying an important message to all of humanity, the spirit and power of the East that people have been trying to pass down from generation to generation for thousands of years through painting, religion, literature, music, and other forms. In this spring auction, we present her classic work Sounds of Festival from her Divine Spirits series, which was created in the year 2020 at the beginning of the epidemic, a difficult and special time when Komatsu's vibrant colours strike viewers' senses and heal their hearts with art. 

The Eye and the Soul of the Beast

On the large white washi paper, a flying dragon fills the picture, revealing its radiant eyes looking at the viewer. If you look closely, you can see that the eyes are in the shape of a mandala, which is interpreted in Sanskrit to mean “reincarnation of life”. The beast appears to be fierce, but in fact, it looks at the world with compassionate eyes, showing multiple aspects of both strength and delicacy, and is a projection of the artist's defiance of challenges and confidence in the future despite the pessimistic environment.

Proclamation of Life and Hope

Komatsu first uses short black ink strokes to create the fur, then uses blue, copper, gold, and red acrylics to give the main character's body colour and soul. The undulating texture of the lines drawn in acrylic brings a sculptural quality to the work, making the beast's mood visible in the smallest of spaces. The red tail resembles a burning flame. Its blazing form evokes a sense of vitality and passion, creating a dramatic atmosphere.

As we enter the year 2023, the world is emerging from the epidemic and gradually returning to normal. She proclaims to the world that she has never given up hope and that art is always there in good times and bad: “When creating, sometimes we feel that the beasts in the paintings move, and sometimes they talk to us. We live in a very materialistic and pessimistic world, but if someone can feel something beyond that at this moment, it is a very emotional moment for me.”

Price estimate:
HKD: 300,000 – 500,000
USD: 38,200 – 63,700

Auction Result:
HKD: 780,000



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