Biography

SAKI OTSUKA is a Tokyo native and multidisciplinary artist whose work often focuses on female themes, rooted in the belief that our lives are our own creations.

From the Artist:

"Ever since that day when I was 15, I have lost myself.

Since that day, the nightmares I repeatedly have, the damage I’ve accumulated, and the wounds caused by words have become an enormous pain that remains in my heart.

I live my life with c-PTSD.

My paintings and photographs exist to show that “I am here” after having lost myself to sexual abuse.

Paintings

I’ve been drawing and painting since my childhood. Images came into my mind one after another, and I wanted to become a painter. Now, to reflect the state of my mind, I make two different types of paintings: one is filled with details and small circles, the other is roughly spread ink and paint. Characteristically, the mood and style of my paintings varies with my mental state. The circles are me and proof that “I am here”. I draw them one by one in order to regain my lost self. The ink and paint that I work roughly and vigorously are me, the liberation of my suppressed self.

For me, I am a soul. To regain the soul I’ve lost, I paint and fill myself with new life

Photography

The feeling and knowing that “I am here” is captured in my photography, both subjectively and objectively. As a subject, I modeled for many photographers. The ideas and poses that came from me were always seen as the photographer’s, not mine. The photos that showed my life were also seen as the photographer’s, not mine. I grew so tired of being robbed and began photographing myself, because I am mine.

The feeling and knowing that “I am here” led me to these images that emanate from my past memories and trauma. Starting from self-portraits that traced my past and inner self, I have come to shoot a wide range of subjects, including women, male and female nudes, and landscapes.

The self-portrait works include “Sacrifice” and “Drowning”, which depict sexual abuse, “me”, a collage of me being trampled by men, “Decorate”, a series of painted photos created after realizing I was, in response to my trauma, avoiding having any kind of conspicuous appearance, and “MONSTER”, a self-portrait and installation series informed by my struggle with c-PTSD. My photographic work is still largely self-oriented. The difficulty of living for women is a burden I share, and I think that nudity reveals the wounds of sex and desire, at least, that’s the only reality I’ve ever seen. 

My ongoing crow and mountain series express the pain of my childhood, and I believe them to be linked to the misunderstanding of sexual abuse victims and their anger.

Landscape photography is, in a sense, another kind of self-portrait that reaffirms to me that “I am here”. The everyday world in which I exist, the scenery that I find beautiful, the record of the time I have spent, all of these things are reality, and I am a self-portrait of the world in which I exist."

ー SAKI OTSUKA

  • 1984 Born in Tokyo


otsukasaki.com

Solo Exhibitions

2021

  • "To Be a Woman", GALLERY ETHER (Tokyo, Japan)

2020

  • "Daily Blooms", POL Gallery (Osaka)
  • "Blooming Every Day, Blooming Every Day", Jimbocho Gallery (Tokyo)
  • "From the beginning", Qing Art Space (Tokyo)
  • "I Love You", Human (Tokyo)

2019

  • "We Are in Resonance (MEME)", Jimbocho Gallery (Tokyo)
  • "Goodbye Saki Otsuka", Kiyoshi Art Space Photo Exhibition (Tokyo)
  • "HOTEL-B", Human (Tokyo)
  • "MEME BLUE YELLOW" Photo Exhibition, ART SPACE 獏 (Fukuoka)

2018

  • "Decorate" Photo Exhibition, Jimbocho Gallery (Tokyo), Pulp (Osaka)
  • "HAREAME" Painting Exhibition, Jimbocho Gallery (Tokyo), Pulp (Osaka)

2017

  • "Me + MEME", Pulp (Osaka)
  • "MEME 5nd" Art Space Baku (Fukuoka)
  • "Me" Self-Portrait Photo Exhibition, Jimbocho Gallery (Tokyo)
  • "Otsuka Saki Painting Exhibition", Gulf Gallery (Tokyo)

2016

  • "3P", Jimbocho Gallery (Tokyo), Pulp (Osaka)

2015

  • "GENBA PHOTO" Photo Exhibition, Shibuya Daitokai (Tokyo)
  • "MEME" Photo Traveling Exhibition, ART SPACE 貘 (Fukuoka), Pulp (Osaka), AMP CNNafe (Tokyo)

2012

  • "Secret NUDE", UPLINK (Tokyo), Pulp (Osaka)

Group Exhibitions

2020

  • "Human People" Yuji Ueno x Saki Otsuka Exhibition, Human (Tokyo)

2019

  • "Nearly Equal", Saki Otsuka x Nanano Project Photo Exhibition, Hiroshige Gallery (Tokyo), Pulp (Osaka)

2015

  • "Symmetrically" Saki Otsuka x Mai Kurosaka Painting Exhibition, Asakusa HATCH (Tokyo)

2014

  • "PENG!" Group Exhibition, KATA (Tokyo)