Kaneko Johkoh

Region: Vancouver British Columbia
Born 1923, Ehime Japan


Kaneko Johkoh is a painter. Born in Ehime prefecture, Japan, she started oil painting in 1961, and became active in artists’ associations in Japan. In 1983, she started doing bokusho abstract sumi-e (ink brush) drawings, a style which she exhibited in Japan, France, Spain, the Netherlands, Mexico, and eventually brought with her to Canada. She moved to Vancouver in 1988, and showed her work in many exhibitions around Vancouver and British Columbia, as well as in Ontario and Washington, from 1989-2012. In 2013, at the age of 90, Johkoh saw 28 of her pieces displayed at the New York Agora Gallery.

The critic Ted Lindberg observed how Johkoh ’makes modern paintings by going against the disciplines and stylistic imperatives of her formal training. The results, agreeably bring to mind the unaffected dream-words of Tanguy, the fortuitous, frottaged surfaces of Max Ernst, and the fluid sensuosity of Miro – transliterated through a woman’s perspective. Kaneko Johkoh has confidently moved into a more primal, universal language, yet she has abandoned none of her native sense of the poetic.’

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