Bio | Claudia Kogachi
Born 1995, Awaji-Shima, Japan
Lives and works in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland
Claudia Kogachi’s work leans into the personal. The artist frequently depicts herself and members of her family carrying out everyday and leisure activities, using these to explore interpersonal dynamics and emotional states.
Early paintings show her and her mother engaging in competitive pursuits, such as boxing and table tennis, which became metaphors for the combative dimension of the parent-child relationship. The images were bold and cartoonish. The figures had blue skin, a reference to ‘feeling blue’ that also made them appear otherworldly or like comic-book characters.
Similar frankness is presented in her more recent work. A series painted at the start of 2021, It Is What It Is, shows Kogachi and her partner being assaulted or impeded by a variety of creatures as they attempt to go about their business, Sandhoppers, mosquitoes, and cockroaches pester, bug, and bite. The works include personal features, like freckles and tattoos. The fantastical blue skin is gone.
In the most recent series, Hot girls with IBS, Kogachi turns her attention to her friends and her collective struggles with digestive ailments. Life-size cut-outs and small paintings feature snippets of the many struggles with gas, bowel discomfort, and the urgent and desperate need to find a toilet.
In 2020, Kogachi began producing pictorial rugs using tufting guns. The decision to do so was stimulated in large part by the COVID-19 lockdown, which limited her access to painting supplies. Three substantial bodies of work resulted, one reproducing items associated with her late jiichan (grandfather), one exploring jobs she could take on to support her art career, and one reflecting on memories of time spent with her obaachan (grandmother) in O’ahu, Hawai’i.
Claudia Kogachi was born in Awaji-shima, Japan, in 1995. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Auckland’s Elam School of Fine Arts. In 2019, she won the New Zealand Painting and Printmaking Award. Recent exhibitions include: There’s No I in Team, The Dowse Art Museum, Lower Hutt (2021); Hot girls with IBS, Hot Lunch (2021); It Is What It Is, Jhana Millers (2021); Rugged Heart, Visions (2021): New Artists Show 2020, Artspace Aotearoa (2020).
Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honours (First Class), Elam School of Fine Arts, University of Auckland (2017)
360 Exchange Programme - 1 year of BFA, University of Hawai’i at Manoa (2015)
When the dust settles, Art Space Aotearoa, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
There's No I In Team, The Dowse Art Musuem, Te Awakairangi, Lower Hutt
Hot girls with IBS, Hot Lunch, Ōtautahi, Christchurch
Homespun, Franklin Arts Centre, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
It Is What It Is, Jhana Millers, Te Whanganui-a-Tara, Wellington
Rugged Heart, Visions, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Obaachan During The Lockdown, Wahiawa, Hawai’i, Te Tuhi, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
The New Artist Show, Artspace Aotearoa, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
The Medium is the Message, Gus Fisher Gallery, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Everyone Has A Horse Phase, Sanderson Contemporary, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Uncle Gagi, PlayStation Gallery, Te Whanganui-a-Tara, Wellington
New Zealand Painting & Printmaking Award Exhibition, The Atrium - Wintec, Kirikiriroa, Hamilton
Beijing International Art Biennale, National Art Museum of China, Beijing, China
Those are My Fucking Shoes!, Sanderson Contemporary, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Free Snacks From The Airport Lounge, Allpress Gallery, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Mother and Daughter on Hiatus, Sanderson Contemporary, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Hound Dog, Franklin Arts Centre, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Dog Pit, Saatchi & Saatchi & Saatchi, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Like a Boss, NZ Steel Gallery, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Two Sagittarius One Show, Satchi and Satchi and Satchi, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
You’re not a Princess you know, Window Gallery, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Mom, are we friends?, Meanwhile Gallery, Te Whanganui-a-Tara, Wellington
Spaces In Between, George Fraser Gallery, University of Auckland, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
The Protagonist, Project Space, University of Auckland, Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland
Under Pressure, The University of Hawai’i at Manoa, Hawai’i
Contact: Foreign and Familiar, The Honolulu Museum of Art, Hawai’i
Supreme Winner, New Zealand Painting & Printmaking Award (2019)
First in Course Award, Elam, University of Auckland (2014)
360 Auckland Abroad Exchange Travel Awards, University of Auckland (2016)
Gordon Harris Art Supplies Prize, Elam, University of Auckland (2018)
Hot Girls with IBS, The Art Paper, Nadine Paredes, August 2021. Read it here
Kea Kids News: Artist gets to the bottom of a sensitive tummy topic, Stuff, 10 September 2021. Watch it here
The theatrical work of Claudia Kogachi, Verve Magazine. May 2021. Issue 175. Read it here
We chat to Claudia Kogachi, The Art Paper online, April 2021. Read it here
Art Guard: Who is Claudia Kogachi? Frances McWhannell, Index magazine online, Issue 01. Read it here
Claudia Kogachi: Obaachan during the lockdown, Wahiawā, Hawaiʻi, Abby Cunnane, December 2020. Read it here