Photograph by Brian Culy
Rieko is best known for her detailed portraits of anthropomorphic creatures, usually animals or well-loved toys. A self-taught artist and illustrator, she was born in Japan and has lived in Wellington since 1999. Her first exhibition was held in 2010, followed by several solo shows and group exhibitions in Wellington and Auckland. Every one of her solo shows has sold out.
Rieko’s work is influenced by Pop Surrealism and the Old Masters. Aesthetic elements of Japanese pop culture such as kawaii (cute) also appear in her paintings, finely balanced with melancholy and knowing humour. Rieko’s subjects seem to be a little reluctant to reveal their stories, and often inhabit fairytale settings that evoke childhood fables. Her paintings provide a small but intriguing window into the lives of her characters.
Rieko is represented by Black Door Gallery in Auckland and her limited-edition giclée prints are available exclusively from Eyeball Kicks Gallery in Wellington.
Aotearoa” Warwick Henderson Gallery, Auckland, 2 - 20 October
Portrait Animalia” Warwick Henderson Gallery, Auckland, 4 - 22 October
Creatures” Group show, Roar Gallery, Wellington, 5 - 31 May
Animalia” Eyeball Kicks Gallery, Wellington, 12 - 24 June
Pencil Pop!” Eyeball Kicks Gallery, Wellington, 2 - 16 October
Deep in the Woods” Expression Galley, Upper Hutt, 3 May - 6 July
Grimm Exhibition” Group show, Kina NZ Design + Artspace, New Plymouth, 7 March – 1 April
Hunters - a way of life” Arthur’s Cafe, Wellington, 12 November - 8 December
Circus” Group show, Roar Gallery, Wellington, 7 - 3 February
The Wolf and the Fox”, Thistle Hall Gallery, Wellington, 4 - 9 December
Pirates” Group show, Roar Gallery, Wellington, 3 May - 2 June
Portrait Collection”, Deluxe Café, Wellington, 23 April - 5 May, 2012
Curious Nature”, Thistle Hall Gallery, Wellington, 28 November - 4 December
Imaginary Creatures” Deluxe Café, Wellington