Shibaraku I, december 1986 & August 1987
Edition : Single work
Number : Without, Noted, signed and dated at the back
Canvas size (or piece size) : 81 x 59 cm
Condition : Very good
Provenance: Private collection
Shibaraku (暫, しばらく) is a play in the Kabuki repertoire, and one of the celebrated Kabuki Jūhachiban ("Eighteen Great Plays"). The flamboyantly dramatic costume and makeup (kumadori) used in this painting is famous and associated by the average Westerner with Kabuki in general.
About Henry Bismuth
Born in Paris in 1961, Henry Bismuth came from a family of medical doctors, and it was understood from a young age that he would undertake medical studies.
In 1986, at the end of his next to final year of study, Henry Bismuth left medical school realizing that medicine was not his path. He then dedicated his life to his passion; painting and drawing. From then to 1988, he studied art extensively on his own; discovering different artistic traditions and pictorial worlds. It was during this period that his life was forever changed, impacted by great American painters: John Singer Sargent, Thomas Eakins, Robert Henri, Georgia O’Keeffe, Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline, Robert Motherwell, and Andrew Wyeth. Exploring new mediums and influences from East and West alike, he was later exhibited in galleries and museums the world around.
Shortly after this, his interest expanded to modern and contemporary art although in his first paintings the influence of Japan remained dominant.
For the last few years, he commuted between Paris and New York City, and his focus became less on painting than on conceptualization. His work has been undergoing a major shift, and we now see an emergence of the combination of painterly conceptual and poetic maneuvering that began shaping his process as of late.
In 2009, Henry started to exhibit his paintings with Gerald Peters Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico. By the end of that year, he had had thirty-five group shows at museums in the United States; and in Winter of 2010, he exhibited at “Arts for a Better World,” at Art Basel Miami.