Hiroaki Onuma

HIROAKI ONUMA was born and raised in the countryside of Tochigi, Japan. Onuma was greatly affected by the mono-cultured environment that surrounded him. Early on, as an escape from reality, Onuma discovered anime, incorporating the characters – specifically the monsters – into his childhood paintings. Unknowingly, this would lay the foundation for his future artistic style.

Onuma describes his creative process as “a form of improvisation with a sense of playfulness”. Featuring a vivid color palette, his work ranges from abstract to surreal paintings, often using a mix of acrylic, oil, and spray paint.

Moving from Japan to the UK to study at Central Saint Martins was a major turning point for Onuma. Through overcoming the barriers of communication and cultural differences, Onuma ultimately combined his natural painting style with the new structured techniques he was learning in university (which he aptly named fusion painting). Rooted in the subconscious, the result was a series of dream-like abstract works with the beginnings of Onuma’s surreal landscapes.

Onuma has been featured in several solo and group shows, including Pacific Breeze II, White Conduit Project, London (2021); Day Dream, Sobering Galerie, Paris (2020); Dream Monster, (IM)MATERIAL, Amsterdam (2020); Colorful Monsters, September Tokyo, Amsterdam (2019).

(Photo Credit: 1 Granary; Source: Hiroaki Onuma)