Origins of religion Divine feminine Mythology Nature Spirituality The cycle of life fairy boundary Nature Surrealism
About the artist
Hirabayashi Takahiro paints surreal worlds inhabited by young women and girls. He expresses the ambiguous boundary between reality and unreality through the female figure, who is neither a child nor an adult, but something in-between.
“The adolescent female figures are between childhood and womanhood, in a state of transition, straddling two states like the universe straddles the physical and the metaphysical.” Luke W Barrett
The inspiration for this theme came during his last year as a student, when a major earthquake (2011) transformed his daily life into an extraordinary one. He was moved by the piety and kindness of human beings when he saw food and beautiful flowers being offered to a stone statue of a god on the side of the road, as if supplies were unsatisfactory. “I hope to express the feelings I had at that time through my artwork as well”. Hirabayashi then went on to explore Japanese religious stories and rituals, and painted a worldview inspired by a casual scene with religious stone statues standing in the streets of villages.
More recently Hirabayashi’s work focuses on the theme of the nostalgia, which he feels for a specific place. Through this theme, he believes that human beings are composed of matter that holds memories since the birth of the universe, and through the emotion of “nostalgia,” we are always connected to this world (universe) and contain the world itself.
“We are all part of the ever-changing flow of the world. I want to depict a world that allows us to glimpse the essence of a world that transcends human knowledge and time, stirring the imagination of those who view it.”
Artwork Themes & Subject Matter
Hirabayashi Takahiro paints on religious and folklore subjects from his hometown in Japan, especially Nagano. The local gods and spirits, customs and beliefs that have their origins in prehistoric times. He wants to present an unconventional view of the subject by depicting a mysterious and surreal world with fairy tale-like images.
Hirabayashi depicts the cycle of life. The theme of his work is the process from the origin of life and this world, to its destruction and rebirth. By depicting this theme, “I would like to express that people and everything that exists in this universe are connected and one”.
Hirabayashi Takahiro’s paintings have been featured in notable magazines including Beautiful Bizarre Magazine, The Guide Artists, and ART Collectors’.