Makoto Ofune

Makoto Ofune was born in Japan in 1977. In 2000, he graduated from Kyoto University of Education, Department of Fine Art with a major in Japanese-style painting. In 2001, he completed postgraduate research at his alma mater.

Ofune perceives sensory information from the world around him to create his paintings: wind, sounds, floating air, and the taste of the surroundings. With this composite information, he develops a sensory, intimate landscape with blended tonalities, producing a viewing experience that is both imaginative and perhaps curiously voyeuristic. Ofune’s work transports viewers back to nature and weaves art into the daily rituals and experiences of life, as is the case in much of traditional Japanese art. Ofune also takes care to create his colors from an ancient method of pounding natural metal ore or gemstones—cinnabar, azurite, and malachite—into powdered red, blue, and green pigments. The artist meticulously adds multiple layers of the pigments to achieve the desired color. These powdered mineral pigments are then applied to traditional Japanese hemp paper mounted on board. Ofune encourages the viewer to get lost in the observation of his work, and to explore the subject on display and the feeling of staring into a carefully mediated abyss.

Ofune currently lives and works in Shiga, Japan.