TwoOne ‘Seven Samurai’ @ Backwoods Gallery
I’m a bit of a movie buff, at the same time, I’m a bit of a street art buff, TwoOne decided to put both of these cultures together for his long awaited show at Backwoods gallery this month. A Japanese artist taking on such an iconic piece of film is no simple task, especially in winning over fans of the original Kurosawa classic, but is it possible? Yes.
It’s very easy to enjoy TwoOne’s work without the theme of this show and what he’s showcasing here is no different, in terms of quality, to what he has offered in the passed. His work is beautiful and its easy to mistaken him as just a contemporary artists, with out the street art influence. Half man, human human creatures stand in motion, almost trying to escape the canvas they lay in. There are little to no bright colours in each piece, giving them a faded and rustic appeal to the subject matter. It all really works, its all mythical and like the artists of ancient times, creates a sense of wonder in the characters presented with each piece. I’ve always felt that TwoOne’s work is similar to that of a sketch, instead of finished piece, its a deliberate effect I’ve always enjoyed, similar to that of Anthony Lister, it gives each character their own space and motion leaving the viewer wondering where they are in that moment of time.
For those that don’t know Seven Samurai is an amazing Japanese film made in 1954 by legendary filmmaker Akira Kurosawa, while not my favourite of all his movies [Dreams], it is definately a film you must put on your bucket list. The film deals with a number of personalities coming together to form a super Voltron-esque group to help a small village protect themselves against a group of rogue samurai. Nobody within the group is perfect, they each have their own strengths and faults, it may sound a bit cliche, but it was the first of its kind to do it right. Walking into this show, I couldn’t find a direct link to the movie and the show as a whole, but there are elements directly apparently, emotions in particular. There is a sense of loss, fear and ernest in the pieces, but they also show signs of hope, the lack of colour is often compensated for white which gives the characters a sense of time and space to fill in their faded worlds. The Seven Samurai story is all about the journey one must take in their lives, this show is a great artistic example of the moods, trials and tribulations life has to offer, while also showing the beauty along the way.
This top of the line show is on until September 30, do not miss it, these pictures don’t do it justice, they’re much better in person on such a large scale.