Masaya Chiba, born in 1980, is an artist from Kanagawa. He studied oil painting at Tama Art University, and has held a few exhibitions to date, including two (2006 and 2008) at SHUGOARTS in Tokyo. At the centre of each oil painting by Chiba are misshapen wooden or clay sculptures. Most are plaster-white figures or heads propped up on wooden shelves or poles, against walls or landscapes in dull colours. Chiba says that, as he paints, he always has the objects he paints before him. As you look at his paintings, you, too, will always have the faceless creatures before you. In some pieces, the heads vomit in dull colours, twist elaborately, or pose with a hoarder’s delight of Polaroids and miscellaneous objects, but always they remain in the foreground.
One of Chiba’s collections is entitled “The Wonderful World I Got to See Because I was Alive“. While we can’t really see the world that the artist saw as he was out and about (in “Dinosaur”, for example, the view from the driver’s seat in a car is blurred behind the white object in the centre), the obtrusive sculptures let us see what the artist saw as he was painting the scenery.
At the very least, these will likely be the most benign vomiting heads or heads-on-spikes you’ll ever see.
Article by Monica Wang