WABA WABA WABA POMPAKLEEN
PEE-KARA PEE-KARA WASHI WABA
CHOB CHOB POMPAKLEEN
CHON CHON BUBUCHON WABA WABA
Huhtamaki Wab works between painting, performance and video, installation and sculpture alongside his role as director of the Genius Treasure Collection.
Wab’s practice operates within an animistic and non-anthropocentric world. Interconnected spirits and humans populate landscapes that create ecstatic realities. Heavily informed by the animistic culture from his birthplace of Japan, depictions of yokai in ukiyo-e prints as well as contemporary representations of this heritage, for example, in cultures such as manga, can be seen in his work.
A move to rural Devon has revitalised his acute connection to the landscape. Engaging physically through walking the moors, swimming in rivers as well as making rituals and offerings within these spaces both entangle and inform Wab's life, well-being and art making. Diagnosed with schizophrenia at the age of 16, later experiencing periods of addiction, the worlds he creates are integral to his on-going recovery, providing a space for being with and solace.
Wab has a keen interest in art made outside of the institution, collecting artworks from markets and car boots mostly by unknown makers. Known as the Genius Treasure Collection, it was displayed in London as a public museum in his bedroom between 2018 and 2019. Wab’s humorous navigation in how he situates himself and his practice in relation to the institutional art world is exemplified through his choice of name, Huhtamaki, an alias taken from a disposable cup from the Tate.
Born in Tokyo, 1984, Graduated Chelsea College of Arts, 2008. Lives and works in Devon, UK
2020/21 "Why do you follow my son around?"
"Because I like mites"
- Edible and Non-edible persons of waba and pompakleen. Exeter Phoenix, UK, solo show
2020 - Goose Summer. Online Group Show
2020 - Rame Projects Residency, Cornwall, UK
2020 - Glasgow International, Don't Let the Bastards Grind you Down. UK (POSTPONED)
2020 - Moving Forward, Ariel Centre, Devon, UK
2020- Encounter with the Monolith /Vorspiel, Backsteinboot Gallery, Berlin, Germany
2019 - Got it for Cheap/Velvet Ropes, House of Vans, London, UK
2019 - Barbara Wesolowska and Huhtamaki Wab. Unit 21, Penarth Centre. London, UK
2019 - Blackwing Studio, London, UK
2018 - 50A.D “Efrin Everywhere” Vevey, Switzerland
2018 - Create Pembrokeshire Residency, Wales, UK
2018 - Church Painting Show Part 1, London, UK
2020 - Art Work Exeter Film Commission - Edible Person
2019 - Cabbage, CCA Glasgow, UK
2018 - Safa, London, UK
2018 - Cabbage - Junk Space, Glasgow, UK
2017 - Mount Florida Screenings, Glasgow, UK
Genius Treasure Collection
2020 - Plymouth Art Weekender, UK
2018 - 2019, Genius Treasure Museum, London, UK
2018 - GTC Paintings, Lara Project Space, London, UK
2017 - Selected works from collection - Lima Zulu, London, UK