Kenji’s Art Sundays – Lossy

November 12, 2006

Starting today and for every Sunday, Beats Entropy will showcase a new painting of mine and I will describe the ideas, processes and technique I used to realize it.

Please feel free to comment; any comments are welcome including criticisms.

Today’s Piece:

Title: Lossy
Medium: Acrylic and Ink on Canvas
Size: Approx. 48″ x 60″

Click read more to see the a larger image of the piece, and to read the article.

It’s fascinating watching society change all around you. For this painting I wanted to explore how digital cameras are becoming so ubiquitous that any special moment you experience in life can now easily be documented and made available for everyone else to see the next day. And as with any medium that becomes so popular and common, people usually start focusing on just a few specific aspects, in order to filter the multitude of samples that assault us. Naturally anything voyeuristic, especially having to do with sexuality, is at the top of the list.

In the painting, the people holding the cameras are clamoring to take voyeuristic snapshots. They are faceless and hiding behind their cameras, existing in the gooey, messy, drippy world of reality that is unprotected by any airbrushing or photoshopping. The subjects of their photos on the other hand, lounge around in between them- naked, posing, fucking, outlined in a graphic style that is idealized and hollow. This all happens on a backdrop of pixels and frames, representing the digital stage before an internet audience. The whole process is about the approximation of desires, ideals, and social status through many steps; the title “Lossy” is a reference to the compression algorithm used for JPG images: an approximation.


I switched back and forth between thick acrylic paint applied in broad sections and highly watered down acrylic splashed on in many layers. Occasionally I took a water-soluble pen and outlined and cross-hatched, and then used the watery paint to smudge it. Then I would use a water-insoluble marker to outline again. As a rough guide, I used photos of my friends assembled into a collage in Photoshop.

Copyright 2006 Kenji Toyooka


One Response to “Kenji’s Art Sundays – Lossy”

  1. Queen Minx Says:

    Whenever I look at a piece of visual art, or … I notice it … I am most always attracted by the colour.

    It was the colour in this piece that beckoned me closer.

    I like the abstract, I enjoy it, more than other more, realistic mediums.

    I didn’t see the men and women having sex, until you pointed it out.

    That’s the point, I think.

    I have become a third voyeur. The one watching them, watching … them.

    Could there be a fourth voyeur. Them watching me, watching them … watching them.

    Of course. I am the third and the fourth.

    I really, really like it.


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