Leiko Ikemura

(Japan / Switzerland) *1951 in Tsu, Mie

In 1972 Leiko Ikemura came to Europe from Japan; today she can already look back on a highly successful career, on countless exhibitions in Europe, Japan and the USA, and on her many years as professor at the University of the Arts in Berlin. The fascination her paintings and sculptures hold for the observer is often explained by the blend they embody, of oriental and European culture. But Ikemura’s works cannot be properly appreciated only through the lens of a cultural encounter – her dream landscapes with their delicate, often abstract, melded-together figures claim, rather, a life of their own. The formal qualities of Ikemura’s works demand an independent viewing. This plurality of aspects is evident also in her pair of “Hare columns”, on display in Blickachsen 12 in the Bad Homburg castle gardens: connected by their identical forms, and oscillating between figuration and abstraction, the two bronzes are nonetheless distinguished by the different patination of their surfaces. In them, we can recognize animal, plant and human forms. This openness of meaning and the insertion of the figures into their green surroundings blurs the boundaries between subject and object, between man and nature.