Reflections On Our Paris Exhibition

To all the people who helped put this exhibition together, all the people who came to see it and all those people who couldn’t make it but still lent us their support and good wishes, I’d like to say a big thank you. I’m truly grateful to each and every one of you. There were people who came from surrounding countries for the sole purpose of our exhibition and special thanks goes out to them for believing in us.

In truth, from the outset, there were a number of ups and downs in holding this exhibition. Although we received a lot of positive feedback, there were also a number of people who felt that the exhibition didn’t meet their expectations.

With this in mind I’d like to take this opportunity to give my own impressions of the lead up to and the exhibition itself.

In actual fact, 20 artworks loaned to a Swedish design museum prior to the exhibition, (works which I considered to be the real masterpieces of the show) never made it to Paris in time to be exhibited.
At the present time, these works are still yet to be delivered to France. This is due to a number of issues and disagreements between the Swedish museum and our company.
There is nothing I can say which will change the outcome of this situation, but this was one of the major causes for the negative responses to our Paris exhibition. I humbly apologies to all the patrons who came specifically to see Japanese gay art, only to be disappointed at the number of works exhibited.

Another possible reason for dissatisfaction was our decision to present a combined exhibition of Japanese pop and gay art. I can’t say that either genre is at fault but I feel we failed to meet the needs of collectors of both sides and in turn disappointed both audiences by exhibiting the works together. This is a problem we have faced previously in Australia, but in our defense, from a business perspective there was really no viable alternative.

On a positive note, I did perceive the huge possibilities in exhibiting Japanese gay art from our Paris exhibition. It is a fact that the majority of our collectors are based in Europe and the USA rather than Australia. Among those collectors, our customers in France were kind enough to give us plenty of advice and comments on a number of levels. For this I am truly grateful.

Taking into consideration both the positive and negative aspects of this exhibition, I am looking forward to our next European show.

I first became involved in Japanese gay art in 2009. In truth I specialize in pop and contemporary mainstream art. Of course as a gay man, I also love gay art and my wish is for gay art to move from the underground art scene into the mainstream.

The concept of gathering, exhibiting and selling Japanese gay art overseas was something I considered unachievable, and as the first company in the world to do so we have had to overcome many hurdles. I am exceedingly grateful to the owner of our company who was willing to invest a huge amount of time and money in gay art. I am in awe of her as a straight woman with the foresight and the tenacious spirit to make this dream a reality. She is someone I truly respect.

In truth, the number of exhibitions featuring gay artists in Japan is exceedingly small, and for someone like me living overseas, to build trust with such artists took a lot of time. My days are filled with trips to Japan, meeting artists individually and discussing their ideas about gay art. I then have to gain their approval to show and sell their artworks at our exhibitions and once the exhibitions are over, announce the results and hopefully encourage them to create new works for the next show.

There is still so much for me to learn about gay art. For this reason, as much as possible, I always make it a point to listen to the ideas and opinions of each and every collector.

I’m planning a return trip to France next year. I hope to provide our customers with a wider selection of artworks and even greater quality.
I humbly ask for your continued guidance and support. To this I’d also like to express my strong desire for all of you to visit my country too. I will do everything in my power to fulfill the desires of you, my customers. For this reason, even if a full scale exhibition is not possible, I would like the opportunity to bring our artworks and to show them to each of you in person.

I‘m hoping to be able to bring Japanese gay art to as many countries as possible in the next year and I would love the opportunity to speak with everyone, not only via email, but face to face if I have the chance.

I’ll continue to do my best over the next year, so I hope you’ll continue to give me your full support.

Masahiko