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The 23rd “1_WALL” Graphics Competition Grand Prize Winner

Hirate Exhibition: “Fists Filled with Cotton”

  • DATES : Tue. April 12 - Sat. May 21, 2022
  • HOURS : 11:00a.m.-7:00p.m.
  • Closed Sundays, and April 29 (Fri) through May 5 (Thu). Admission free.

    On April 26, Tuesday, the gallery will close at 6:30 p.m. in order to prepare for that evening’s Talk Event.

    * Inside the gallery, all visitors are requested to submit to a temperature check, sanitize their hands, wear a face mask, and maintain a social distance of 2 meters. Persons with any of the following symptoms are requested to refrain from visiting: fever (above 37.5℃), cough, sore throat, general fatigue, etc. Visitors are also requested to take all necessary precautions to protect against infection while en route to the gallery.

Hirate won the Grand Prize in the 23rd “1_WALL” Graphics Competition for “You are my escape,” her works centered on textile objects taking human form. The judges gave Hirate high marks for the three-dimensional structure and technical strength of her works – wearable as fashion, made from cloth she received from an acquaintance – and her straightforward stance toward creativity.

For her solo exhibition, Hirate has chosen as her theme the situation of living with someone who doesn’t exist in reality. She will be showing objects with human forms created mostly using dyed cloth and cotton. These “objects” will have capabilities to engage the viewer in various ways: by striking up a conversation, for instance, or raising a fist, or making music. By giving her works bodies and physical functions, people who don’t exist come to exist, and mutual interplay occurs with the observer who enters the exhibition space. In addition to her installations, within the gallery space, which will be made to look like an everyday street scene, Hirate will show video presentations, photographs, drawings and manga. What’s more, during the exhibition’s run the artist will for a time actually take up residence on the premises.

Visitors are sure to enjoy seeing what Hirate has created a year after her victory in the “1_WALL” competition. On April 26 (Tue), a Talk Event will take place featuring Hirate and art director and graphic designer Yuri Uenishi.







July 25, 1997 Born in Kanagawa Prefecture
2016 Entered Tama Art University, majoring in oil painting. Joined the “Yarimizudaiko” club of taiko drum players.
2018 Withdrew from the university and started working in a butcher shop. Simultaneously began living on her own.
2019 Also started working at a sushi restaurant.
2020 Graduated from Yarimizudaiko and joined, and completed, the 24th primary course of coconogacco.
2021 In January, quit her job at the butcher shop.
Thereafter, plans are undecided.

Message from the Artist

I kept making improvements aiming for the fist, which I attached at precisely the height of my face, to work like it was hitting me with a powerful punch. So far, though, it just brushes lightly across my face.
I thought it would be neat if I could engage in fisticuffs with this cute, lifeless thing. But with its indescribable movements it just kept loitering, with strange speed, around the perimeters of my dream of fighting it.
Uncertain whether my dream will or won’t ever come true, OK, just the way it is, let’s go to the beach, to the mountains, to a river, to dirt, to concrete, to anywhere.

Message from One of the Judges

When I first saw photos of Hirate’s works during the portfolio judging, I sensed an ineffable power of persuasion that transcended my inability to understand what I was seeing. It was later, when I saw them exhibited in the group show, that I came to know that her objects (clothing?), which just barely seemed to maintain their shape, are actually meticulously sewn and structurally fit for wearing. In Hirate’s attitude toward production, I sensed sincerity, never making light of fashion, combined with her desire to entertain. True, among the works scheduled to be included in her solo exhibition, objects she wore will become objects, literally; yet when Hirate appears wearing clothing of her own making (a uniform of the kind worn by high school baseball players), the fashion element isn’t lost. Since what I’m seeing are photos, I can’t be sure of details, but her uniform too seems to be quite suitable as clothing. Though being seen from such a perspective may go against Hirate’s own intentions, Hirate’s true essence isn’t adversely affected no matter how she is viewed – she’s that strong an artist, I think. In retrospect, that may be precisely where her persuasive power comes from.

Ryoji Tanaka (Web Designer)

Organizer: Guardian Garden