A Modest Scream


Hours 12:00 – 19:00
Closed Tuesday and Wednesday
Free Admission
ささやかな叫び A Modest Scream
soh souen ‘A Modest Scream’
Dates: Saturday 21st November 2020 – Sunday 27th December 2020
Venue: The Mass (5-11-1 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo)
The Mass presents ‘A Modest Scream’, a solo exhibition by artist soh souen from Saturday 21st November to Sunday 27th December. Having previously worked under the name of Hajime Kuwazono, this exhibition will be the artist’s first exhibition since adopting the name of soh souen. The exhibition will present a variety of works including ‘tie’, the most recent pieces from the ongoing portrait series the artist has been producing since 2019. The exhibition will also debut souen’s abstract pastel works from the series ‘etude’ and ‘caress and hug’, as well as a three-dimensional installation titled ‘ my body, your smell, and ours’.
The abstract pieces from the series ‘etude’ and ‘caress and hug’ are made by mixing pigments with soil to create a range of unique pastels, with which souen draws directly onto paper using his hands. As he traces and interacts with the surface of the painting, as if he were breathing, the surface of the colors that gradually emerge evoke an inner energy that quietly rises to the surface.

Though it is common practice to use fixatives on pastel paintings to secure the medium and protect against ageing or deterioration; souen chooses not to fix the pigment to the paper. Instead he opts to utilise the physical properties of the medium, allowing the physical surface to remain ephemeral, endlessly reactionary to touch and subject to change over time. From the desire to incorporate a sense of physicality into the surface of the works, this mode of expression was born. In addition to the pastel works, the exhibition will also present a new three-dimensional work; ‘ my body, your smell, and ours’. Marking the first installation for the artist, the piece is made up of 25 sculptural human forms each containing different aromatic herbs and plants collected based on their healing and purification properties.
An exhibition catalogue will be published to coincide with the exhibition.
soh souen was born in 1995 in Fukuoka, Japan. Since graduating from university, souen has
consistently continued his pursuit for modern painting production as an entity with the body. His
previous series ‘body to body’ centered on the identities of the body, myself, and others. He has since
expanded his range of expression to include ‘tie’ and ‘caress and hug’. The exhibition will be souen’s
first solo exhibition at The Mass since participating in the 2018 group exhibition ‘PORTRAIT’.