Yohei Yama

Yohei Yama describes his instinct to actuate the energies of nature, his intentions are to create these ripples that affect the viewer as you stand tracing the patterns of his work. As a viewer, you are integral; humanity and nature are the major proponents of this world. Hence the existence of the viewer plays the role in actualising this intent of appreciation of nature’s forces.

I am the way; I am the rhythm.
Inspiration and heartbeat draws the line that marks the present.

Yama’s paintings are abstract more so than op-art. What you see is not what you see, it is the transcendence of nature, of things that we cannot see but instinctively know. There is existence within the spaces of our presence, it turns the wheel of life. To be engulfed in Yama’s rhythmic lines is to follow the river of his philosophies and his appreciation of nature.

At the time of the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster it too was a tumultuous time for the artist. Far from his native Japan and powerless to help yet he found a way to requite nature. The artist recalls impressing trees motifs on the canvas, ‘I realised this is healing for me, for people, and for the nature humans destroy.’ 

Thus sprang the motifs that characterize his work — little trees, rays of light and swirling winds bridge and rebuild the bond between the artist and the cosmos. Yama’s practice has always been kinetic in movement and intrinsic in motif, taking inspiration from the ever-revolving cycle of nature and life. The painted lines of Yama’s works flow and interconnect, diffracted hues ripple across the canvas, tree motifs grow and multiply in appreciation of the natural world. It is intrinsically the kinesis of nature, it’s dance and rhythm, it’s symbiotic essence; as you look at the work, begin to absorb it through Yama’s meditation on life.

Born in Saitama, Japan in 1977 and currently based in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Yama’s works have been exhibited widely across the international platform as well as featuring in Sotheby’s and Christie’s Hong Kong’s Asian Contemporary art sector.

Yohei Yama, A View, 2015

Yohei Yama, Untitled (C#47), 2021