Open Mind Art Space is pleased to present THINGS, a solo exhibition featuring new abstract steel objects by Los Angeles-based artist, Kento Saisho. An opening reception will be held on Saturday, November 5th from 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM. THINGS will be on view from November 5 – December 10, 2022. Gallery hours are Thursdays – Saturdays, 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM, or by appointment. Please note, the gallery will be closed during the week of Thanksgiving, from November 24-26, 2022.
THINGS is Kento Saisho’s first solo exhibition in Los Angeles and features his newest series of vessels, sculptures and wall pieces created in steel. The exhibition’s title, Things, alludes to and is informed by the kinds of vessel-like forms that are the vestiges of the utilitarian objects and artifacts from antiquity, such as Chinese drinking vessels from the Bronze Age, excavated threadbare baskets, or cracked stone cuneiform tablets. All created in steel, Saisho’s work and the unconventional craft processes that he employs are material explorations in the medium.
The works in the exhibition are cumulatively made from almost 5,000 feet of steel rod that Saisho built up by coiling and welding together, inch by inch, to create organic volumetric forms. The heavily worked surfaces of these pieces are rough, highly textured and often striated, hearkening more to an object made of rough stone or ceramic than industrial steel. The repeated application of texture imbue the surfaces with themes of ritual, evoking the appearance of primitive objects that could be unearthed from a burial mound or dredged up from a shipwreck. Through this work, Saisho questions, “How can an object and material accumulate and reflect its history?”
Kento Saisho (b. 1993, Salinas, CA) is an artist and metalworker currently based in Los Angeles, CA. Working with steel, he creates objects, vessels, and contemporary artifacts. Saisho’s practice harnesses and pushes steel’s limitless capacity for transformation. At high temperatures, steel can be as soft, malleable, and tactile as clay, and through this property, he stacks, coil, and shape metal to create textured and organic forms. These forms are then patched and welded together, and are subsequently burnt, abraded, painted, exposed to acids and patinas, or sometimes left bare. Saisho’s work often references objects from antiquity: primal objects and vessels from the past, fragments that we project meaning onto. He says, “Through interrogating the potential for new expressions in metal, I want to expand the language of the material and expand the field for the contemporary vessel in steel.”
Kento Saisho graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) in 2016, where he was a Windgate-Lamar Fellowship recipient from the Center for Craft in Asheville, NC. Following this, he completed the Core Fellowship at the Penland School of Craft from 2018-2020. He was also a recipient of the inaugural Emerging Artist Cohort from the American Craft Council (ACC) in 2021 and the 2022 Career Advancement Grant from the Center for Craft. He has exhibited nationally and internationally and is currently represented by Citron Gallery in Asheville, NC.
November 5 – December 10, 2022
6-9 PM Saturday, November 5, 2022
Open Mind Art Space
11631 Santa Monica BLVD.
Los Angeles, CA 90025
THUR – SAT, 11 AM – 5 PM or BY APPOINTMENT
For more information, please visit:
(text & photo courtesy of the artist)