Smell of Spring
This painting springs from the artist's memories of growing up in the countryside in Japan. The artist also describes it as "dedicated to all the earthworms that my brother caught" during their youth. Kobayashi’s figurative paintings depict ordinary people, animals and settings in ways that give them a vaguely surreal and slightly off-kilter feeling. When using egg tempera, which dries very quickly, the artist applies thin coats of paint in layers to create jewel-like facets of color and images that seem to emerge from the painted surface only gradually—like distant memories or half-remembered dreams.
Charged with a sense of magical realism, Kobayashi’s figurative paintings combine a sense of intimacy with mystery. The artist's work explores the myriad ways in which we comprehend and feel tenderness toward the minutia of daily life. Her works also examine how liminal objects and phenomena—such as mirrors, windows or shadows—expose a complex duality of person and image through acts of reflection, fragmentation and distortion. In all of her paintings, Kobayashi sensitively explores (or imagines) the interior consciousness of her human and animal subjects.
In the spirit of magical realism, Minami Kobayashi’s figurative paintings depict ordinary people, animals and settings that seem ever so slightly off-kilter. The artist applies thin coats of fast-drying egg tempera paint to create jewel-like facets of color that seemingly emerge from the composition’s surface—evoking distant memories and half-remembered dreams. Combining intimacy with mystery, Kobayashi’s work explores her subjects’ interior life and their tender feelings toward the minutiae of daily life.