International artist, musician and creative consultant, Tomyuki Iwanami (Tomo), has launched his first of many future boutique and atelier around the world, T BY CONCEPT LAtest, locally in Marina del Rey. Each gallery is set to be designed as conceptually representative of the place that it resides, whether it’s New York, Tokyo, London, Paris, or Los Angeles. With a working studio space adjacent the atelier as part of each boutique gallery, Tomo is definitely onto something brilliant. What an incredible means to be able to work in the hottest cities all around the world and to be able to create freely and uniquely in each place, as influenced by that very place. He’s opening the doors for his own creative process to flourish in multiple ways, while opening doors for the public to be let in to his creative process and elegant results.
As a conceptual artist, every detail in his gallery installation is considered; from the lighting, the wall finishes, the interactive and still elements, and of course the content, all meant to be fully experienced through a multitude of senses. On the Friends and Family opening night, the lighting was dim, his surfboard sculptures set at ease against a backdrop of an ongoing black and white film of the ocean waves played behind them. Candles, arranged on grains of soft sand, topped a brick counter, all created by Tomo. Even the Goriki Junmai Ginjo saki being served was selected for its crispness and depth, to mimic the vibe of LA, and of course is also rare and beyond the top shelf, being only sold in high-end restaurants.
The gallery will feature his framed pieces, sculptures, candles, bracelets and fashion items such as pouches, scarves and denim, as well as items acquired through strategic partnership. But, his surfboards are undoubtedly central. And, the way in which they are created seems to be indicative of Tomo’s thought process. His boards infuse a combination of traditional Japanese materials in the layering of urushi-nuri lacquer, kinpaku gold leafing, washi paper and sumi ink, and modernity through western techniques and methods. One of his boards is finished with layers and layers of rich, shiny black lacquer, only until heat is applied via sunshine or torch to magically reveal the underlying gold leafing and centered snake-skin strip and then even further still to its pure white beginning.
I love how the piece is always in flux because of the way in which it was conceived and created. Others have the fluid movement of sumi ink underneath the deep lustrous finish. Others are flecked with gold and shapes, have subtle hints of marble, crystal and diamonds; capturing Southern California’s obsession with beach culture and Hollywood Glamour within each and every piece. They have a solid, yet organic feel to them. The boards are a canvas for his painting process and yet are the art work in entirety. Each piece is a symbiotic juxtaposition in itself, much like I think many feel here in our beloved city of angels.
Having quite the fashion background via working with over thirty well-known international brands from 7 For All Mankind, Cynthia Rowley, Joe’s Jeans, Itochu Corporation, JOIE, to Soludos, Tomo has quite the fashion background. So, it’s no wonder that he would also have his incredible boards at one of the best lifestyle stores in town (and celebrity TopFAV, mind you) that features only the most elegant, unique, and high-end pieces, Ron Robinson. Ron has an iconic artistic eye for cool that he brings to everything he creates and acquires for his beautiful flagship store in Santa Monica and on Melrose as part of Fred Segal. So, Tomo’s boards nestle in, right at home.
WHERE: Fisherman’s Village – 13755 Fiji Way, D1, Marina Del Rey, CA 90292