Statement: Soft Walls

July 12 – August 29, 2014

Women & Their Work Gallery | Austin, Texas

The space-engulfing sculpture called Soft Walls is composed of thousands of square feet of crocheted plastic enveloping wooden walls. The plastic encasement flows off the wall and puddles at the floor. Its combination of external flexibility and internal solidity might be thought of as the image of a tender and soft mother who is, in truth, the strength of the family. Kotani states, “In fact, one of the underlying motives was to honor my mother’s love of handwork and that of other women by employing this technique.” She transforms everyday materials with clever use of scale, a minimalist pallet and her handmade technique. Akiko Kotani’s art embodies the surprising power and attraction of simplicity. Her work contains a depth of feeling within an economy of means.

Kotani states, “Forms exist in a rarified sort of space: “white space.” I imagine it in my reverie. The space is pure. Innocence is complete and time ceases.  But the atmosphere is full of brilliant light. The objects are proportioned in a way that activate the space around them. Space here, is thought of as almost a solid entity. Contrast is totally for the sake of play. Using “women’s work” techniques to bring life to the forms that I conjure up in my dream space is how I delight in creating my work.”

Akiko Kotani Broll 003a