Aiko Miyawaki Japanese, 1929-2014


Aiko Miyawaki was born in 1929, Tokyo. She graduated from Japan Women's University in 1952 and lived and worked as a painter in Europe and North America 1957-1966. In 1962 Miyawaki was invited to Paris by French dealer André Schoeller. There, Miyawaki experienced an autumnal sunset that profoundly informed her relationship with representation. 'I lost all interest in stories which have a beginning, and an end, in bold shapes, bright colours', she said. The mixed-media, two-dimensional works she created in the 1960s expressed this perspective, incorporating materials like glass and powdered marble to create undulating dune-like surfaces that, to quote Hayashi Michio, express a 'tension between transformations and something that remains unchanging'.


These 'paintings' would give way to the artist's shift towards sculpture in 1966. Her 'Utsurohi' works are some of her best known: swirling stainless steel cords planted in bases as if caught in mid-dance. Miyawaki described these as more 'intermediary' than sculpture. 'When the eye that observes the intermediary blends with its refractory, reflective, translucent surface,' she explained, 'something appears, and it is this something that I seek.' Miyawaki was wife to the architect Arata Isozaki, and had past friendships with Man Ray and Richard Lindner.


Miyawaki work has been featured in several exhibitions at key galleries and museums around the world, including the Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Japan.