The “U” zing(Takeshi Nakata)
Born in March 26th, 1969.
The”U”zing (Takeshi Nakata) was born in 1969 in Tokyo, Japan. Despite being born with a progressive muscular disease, which limited his full physical mobility, he started painting in his youth.
When he could still move his hands, he painted with watercolors and oils. As he gradually lost the ability to use his hands, however, he only became more eager to seek deeper, further-reaching ways of expressions. He started using computers when they became widely available, creating graphics by a stick held in his mouth.
He also got involved in music, directing collaborations on stereoscopic work among other projects. From 2002 he started using a custom-made camera mount on his electric wheelchair, which The”U”zing would operate with a stick held in his mouth. That began the incorporation of photography into his work.
While concentrating on photography, The”U”zing keeps up a range of self-taught practices, from painting to creating stereograms, from designing web pages to writing music, lyrics, scenarios and short stories. He does it all on an electric wheelchair.
At first look, The”U”zing’s work can seem to lack a unifying aesthetic sense. Looking past the surface, however, one can see similar elements and themes – ‘life’, ‘death’, ‘light’, ‘shade’, ‘happiness’, ‘sadness’, ‘Eros’, ‘hope’ – continually woven together. At the core, The”U”zing is of such ‘life’ (‘seimei’) and ‘cosmos’ (‘uchuu’).
After seeing his work, one viewer responded, “Your photographs are like prints from your blinking eyes. They show the world as only you can see it”.
The artist name, “The”U”zing”, is written with English-language signs, but in Japanese kanji they signify ‘time’ (‘jikan), ‘play’ (‘asobu’) and ‘god’ (‘kami’). It’s pronounced the same as ‘free person’ (‘jiyuujin’).
Although he may not have ‘freedom’ in a physical-bodily sense, within his self and his works he is free – through time, in leisure, as divine.
In The”U”zing’s words: “I am a physically handicapped person – so what’s wrong? Maybe nothing. It’s simply how things are. What excites me beyond understanding, though, is thinking just what in the world I want to create next”.
2013 8Th_100_Artist_Exhibition at Ouchi Gallery NY
2012 Group Exhibition at Independants “1st Oz Exhibition” of Omega Algea
2011 Group Exhibition “Yugure Iro ● 3 (Dusk Color 3)” at Gallery Avi
2011 Group Exhibition “Deka Photo ● 3 (Large Photo 3) “at Gallery Avi
2009 Group Exhibition “ART & PHOTO BOOK EXHIBITION 2009″ at Shinjuku Ophthalmologist
2004 (Juried) Next One’s Competition, Invited Artist
2001 Iwaki CG Art Festival, Still category, 2nd Prize
1994 Dream Draw Gallery, 1st Prize
1991 KFS Illustration Festival, Coppertone award