An image of Smiley face

Koji Ryui

(Australia 1976 – )

Smiley face

Not on display
Further information

Koji Ryui's practice is based upon the subtle and sustained transformation of commonplace materials. Working intuitively, Ryui invests these humble things with an almost mystical quality, sometimes underscored by wry humour. In this cluster of five assemblages, Ryui's minimal gestures open out an array of associations between the banal and mystical, inert and animate, micro and macro. In 'Mother', for instance, an upturned pot capped with Spakfilla and resting on an old stool evokes the snowy peak of Mt Mehru, considered to be the centre of the universe in Buddhist and Hindu cosmology. 'Cloud' plays in a more abstract fashion on the elemental and allusive properties of found items, while 'Ceramic' brings small talismanic objects from the natural world into dialogue with moulded packaging, investing the consumer cast-offs with anthropomorphic stature. Both 'Smiling' and 'Smiley face' invoke the pervasive pop-culture icon of the "smiley face" through unlikely means, a bucket and a strand of tinsel respectively.

tinsel, steel
115.0 x 60.0 x 45.0 cm
Signature & date

Not signed. Not dated.

Gift of Clinton Bradley 2016. Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program
Accession number
© Koji Ryui