Saito has converted to a fine art painter from an internationally renowned graphic designer since 2006. He held his first solo exhibition, titled “Scene 0” at 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art in Kanazawa in 2008. Most of the paintings from this show were based upon a Saito’s strong instinctive hold on various motion pictures from his childhood when his father often took him to theaters. Afterwards he has become an interest in individual portraits of artists, celebrities, and actresses, and taken source materials from magazines and photographs to analyze and reconstruct their faces throughout computers. Then he transcribes his own imagery onto a canvas. His creative process continues in filling in thousands of dots with different color paints, appeared from the transcription process of his original digital image. This is what Saito named “digital-analog painting”. His second major solo show at Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art in 2019 was focused on a series of portrait paintings; Lucian Freud, Francis Bacon, Antonin Artaud, Brigit Bardot, and Marilyn Monroe. Saito has recently challenged to transfer the images of existing masterpiece paintings by Edward Hopper to his own interpretation, and his boundless exploration never ends.
1952 born in Kitakyushu, Fukuoka, Japan
Sep. 2019 "Makoto Saito ―Criticality―" in Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art, Kitakyushu-shi Sep. 2017 ”2100” in Tomio Koyama Gallery, Tokyo 2011 "Like Nectar Attracting Bees" in Tomio Koyama Gallery, Tokyo 2012 "Face to Face / Compositio" in Paul Kasmin Gallery, New York 2012 ”Son et Lumiere ー Material, Transition, Time" in 2008 "Makoto Saito ：SCENE［0］" in 21st Century of Contemporary Art Kanazawa, first solo exhibition in Japan