Hiro Ando

Hiro Ando

Japan 1973


Hiro Ando
Hiro Ando
April 14, 2016
Behind the pseudonym of Lor Dethal lies Nemanja Torlak, a writer for Widewalls intrigued and moved by diversity in art and in the lives of those who create it. It is often the unexpected that come forth and surprise us, and art is a world that allows it and makes it possible. David beats the Goliath daily, and writing about it is a pleasure.

Being a world-class metropolis, Tokyo is a place of endless happenings, beginnings, and a plentiful history. With so much to offer, it’s no wonder many find inspiration in its content, both present and past, and Hiro Ando is no exception. Depicting the scenery of the city with a traditional nuance, Ando adds the contemporary element into his paintings, drawings, and recently sculptural work, mostly influenced by the Japanese Manga. As one of the founding members of the CrazyNoodles collective studio, Ando and his work represent the light, fun side of the neo-pop culture.

Hiro Ando
Hiro Ando – Sumoraicats on a display. Photo credits maddog-gallery.com

Merging Traditional With Contemporary

Hiro Ando began his prolific career in 1995 in Tokyo, depicting its nighttime urban landscape. With a lot of inspiration, the streets proved to be an endless source of material for his narratives which often included the red fish in addition to the urban background. The act of the red fish in his paintings greatly reminds of the ancient Japanese watercolor paintings, thus making his work permeated with both a contemporary and traditional feeling. With his artistic beginnings tied to illustration, he would draw several sketches before actually working on the canvas, and his practice has since spread to video material, digital support, and sculpture.

Hiro Ando’s recent practice has widely included sculptural work

Hiro Ando
Left: Hiro Ando – Pandasan Flowerpower, 2015 / Right: Hiro Ando – Samuraicat, 2006. Photos credit galerie-art-alain-daudet.com

Adding Sculpture to the Fold

Being a multidisciplinary artist, Hiro Ando had added sculpture to his portfolio, creating artwork that furthers his conjunction of old and new. Built upon the traditional maneki-neko, standing for “lucky cat” within the Japanese mass culture, Ando constructs cat-like figures assuming various forms like samurai, sumo, and robot. Their outlook reminds of Japanese modern Manga, a world that influenced the youth of the artist profoundly, instilling Ando’s sculptures with a light, approachable line. Adding to it are the bright, often monochrome colors, and the smooth, shiny materials including resin, porcelain, bronze, and even diamonds, making his works representative of the contemporary neo-pop art.

Hiro Ando’s works represent a conjunction between the traditional and contemporary

Hiro Ando
Hiro Ando – Warriorcat, 2011. Photo credits artfair.fr

A Modern Samurai

By adding the element of tradition to the popular Japanese culture, Hiro Ando creates an alluring portfolio that is easily paving its own road within the contemporary art world. Likable and easy on the eye, the cat-like sculptures became his signature mark and are uplifting Ando in the current art scene. Posing a new view on the traditional norms, Ando is a modern samurai of the Japanese art.

The artist is represented by Galerie Jacob Paulett.

Hiro Ando currently lives and works between Tokyo and Shanghai.

Featured image: Hiro Ando – Warriorcat (detail), 2011. Photo credits artfair.fr.
All images used for illustrative purposes only.

YearExhibition TitleMuseum/GallerySolo/Group
2016 SamuraiCats in Buddha Bar Hotel in Paris , 4 Rue d'Anjou, 75008 Paris FRANCE Galerie Jacob PaulettSolo
2011 Collective show Rize Art Gallery, The NetherlandGroup
2010 Lille Art Fair Lille Grand PalaisGroup
2010 Nippon Neo Pop Galerie Jacob Paulett, Paris, FranceGroup
2010 Manga in Amsterdam Willem Kerseboom Gallery, Amsterdam, NetherlandsGroup
2010 Nippon Show Galerie 28 Paris, FranceGroup
2009 Slick Paris le 104 (Artfair)Group
2009 Scope New York 355 West 36th Street (Artfair)Group
2009 Manga in Amsterdam Willem Kerseboom Gallery, AmsterdamGroup
2009 Art Paris Grand Palais (Artfair)Group
2009 Art Amsterdam Amsterdam RAI (Artfair)Group
2009 Scope Basel Kaserne Basel (Artfair)Group
2009 The world.... a cartoon Willem Kerseboom Gallery, AmsterdamGroup
2009 Wonderland Opera Gallery, Hong Kong, ChinaGroup
2009 Shogun in Pokemonland Opera Gallery, Geneva
2009 From Kyoto to Tokyo Galerie Jacob Paulett, Paris, France
2009 Nippon 2009 Galerie Ariel Sibony, Paris, France
2008 Art London Royal Hospital Group
2008 Inside Japan La 5e Galerie, Paris, FranceGroup
2008 Tokyo Express Opera Gallery, London, UKGroup
2008 Neo Pop made in Japan Galerie Ariel Sibony, Paris, FranceGroup