I visited this local gallery shown in the eye-catcher on my way back home after completing the procedures to renew my driver’s license. I read in a newspaper that they were having a solo exhibition of an artist named Ken Chiba, who studied art professionally in the UK in his thirties and forties. He is now 70 years old, draws and paints passionately while working as an English teaching assistant at a local school. I saw some photos of him surrounded by his works at this gallery in some newspapers and got very curious to see his works. The gallery is a bit far from my home-it takes around 20 min by taxi(I don’t drive by the way), so I was not sure if I would actually go, but fortunately I had to come very close to this location for my driver’s license renewal(well, I have been using it purely as one of my credentials). So I took this opportunity to stop by the gallery to look at his exhibition.

The word which came to my mind while walking through the atmosphere created by this series of artworks by Ken was “authentic”. I often get a feeling that there are too many poor artworks created thoughtlessly taking advantage of an idea that there are no rules in art. That is okay, and maybe there are not a few people who feel happy with this sort of artworks, but I much prefer artworks which clearly convey the artists’ view of the world backed up with solid technical excellence. This exhibition was exactly what I wanted to see and I found it very “nutritious” as well as “yummy”.

AND importantly….this gallery also offers pretty delicious sweets and coffee!

While I enjoyed the artworks and the sweets, I had a chance to chat with a lady who runs this gallery. I explained to her that I got interested in this exhibition because I myself was working on pastel drawings. I showed her some of my works on my smartphone and asked how I could reserve the gallery for my own solo exhibition. Apparently she was happy with my question and provided me with some materials detailing how to book a gallery for an exhibition.

The rent for this gallery was only 2,500 JPY per day, which I found pretty reasonable, so I decided to have my solo exhibition here in Spring next year. According to the rules and terms of use of this gallery, I can exhibit my original works, sell some goods and items such as postcards, and hold an event, too. If you sell your original artworks and/or some items during the exhibition, the gallery collects a fee of only 10% of the sales. This was also pretty reasonable as I once heard from a friend of mine that some venues in Tokyo collect as much as 75%.

I and the gallery lady promised that we would have more detailed discussions for the success of my solo exhibition here.
I think I had a very fruitful day!