Studio Sunday: Azuma Makoto
Today on Studio Sunday let’s take a look inside the studio of Azuma Makoto. Makoto is a Japanese artist who works in the unusual medium of flowers, growing them, sometimes splicing them and otherwise affecting their development, and placing them in bizarre installations. Recent artworks by Makoto have seen gorgeous, lush flower arrangements frozen in blocks of ice and placed in a cold warehouse or rocketed into the upper levels of Earth’s atmosphere.
Fittingly, Makoto’s studio looks more like the back rooms of a high-end florist than many art studios that I’ve seen. While a number of the artists that have appeared on our website work with natural and organic materials, such as charcoal and natural pigments, none go so far as Makoto does. The artist cultivates his materials from scratch.
The studio space, located in Aoyama, Japan, is strictly climate controlled with stainless steel refrigerators for storing the plants that will soon be used in projects. In the photo above, numerous glass vases filled with flowers and green, fresh plants sit atop steel gurneys, ready to be made into artistic creations. I wonder what the glass orbs standing below the arrangements are going to be used for!
The plants in Makoto’s studio look intensely green and healthy. As someone who has never been able to successfully keep a garden, this in itself seems a pretty amazing feat. I imagine Makoto employs a team of assistants to ensure that his flowers are kept in peak condition.