At first glance, Japanese artist Haroshi's sculptures seem playful, vibrant takes on pop culture, reinterpreting familiar objects and icons. His masterful, meticulous craft is celebrating its 10th year, but there's a deeper connection to the materials he uses than the casual viewer might notice.
Haroshi uses only used skateboards to create his work -- a process that started out of necessity. His latest show, titled "Virtual Reality" -- an homage to Plan B's legendary second skate video -- recently opened at the Jonathan Levine Gallery in New York City, featuring a skillfully crafted skull with braces and gold teeth, a smiley face made up of bullets and a cat doing a handplant, which stands more than 45 inches tall.
Haroshi's work has carved out its own reality. Through an interpreter via email, XGames.com recently spoke to Haroshi about his process, his inspiration and the connection between skateboarding and his art.
What got you started with sculpture? Did you have a lot of background working two-dimensionally?
"The first time I produced something with skateboards was when I made the [sales] display for the accessories I made during that time. The first time I produced 2D pieces of work was the "Mario" series, and then with the dots remaining, I began to make 3D pieces of work. That was the beginning. It's fun when a 2D material becomes a 3D piece of work, isn't it? I think that what we are making is going a completely different direction compared with nowadays way of thinking. While everything is going CAD, we are keeping an analogical way of producing things. But we think it is very important."
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