Town Lights

“Town Lights” 182 x 364 The 85th The Japan Art Institute Exhibition
Sato Sakura Art Museum Collection


 For a long time, I had been intrigued by city scenes paved with stone that remind me of the history of Europe. I visited Paris, Italy, Spain several times. Then I encountered this scene in Vienna after a rainfall, where the warm light from an old café and the town lights reflected in the wet surface of the road. It makes me sentimental. The scene was somehow familiar. Perhaps from the warm color of the light? In this town of comfort, I was absorbed in sketching surrounded by various warm sounds, the footsteps of people walking by, the commotion, the easy laughter, the sound of horses’ hooves on the street, the voice of a man inviting people into his carriage.
 After coming back to Japan, I painted in my studio where my mind went back to Vienna, wandering to the plaza, walking while watching people passing by. As a matter of technique, I made an effort to describe two distinctive lights, the town lights and the lights from the shops. Both are attractive but each has distinctive steady glow. In the stage of composition, I thought of a number of stories, came up with people for them, imagined their lives and composed as I enjoyed a feeling of being a movie director. I have never spent such a long time drawing so many people and erasing them at the stage of under drawing.
 My teacher from the Japan Art Institute Exhibition, Mr. Toshio Matsuo, told me that “It reminds me of the last scene of a movie I saw long time ago ‘Sunset in Vienna.’ It was a story of a playboy, a painter who starts a new life after he meets an innocent girl.”
 Hearing a story I never imagined, I was pleased. I don’t know why.