For five years starting in 2007, Shinpei Kusanagi (b.1973) made monthly serialized paintings to accompany installments of Teru Miyamoto’s novel “Mizu no Katachi” (“The Shape of Water”) in the magazine éclat. Text and image had little to do with one another, though the small, standard format paintings (what the artist in fact refers to as “drawings”) centered on views from Tokyo’s Kiyosumi and Shirakawa districts.

“Where Water Comes Together With Other Water,” which takes its title from a book of poems by Raymond Carver, is Taka Ishii Gallery, Kyoto’s current show of 60 or so of these representational works, and the subsequent distillation of those experiences into abstraction. The narrative and connotative processual flows associated with the passage of water and Carver’s poetry are found in the display of representational images, which have no titles and are meant to be viewed in the order that they are lined up — like the flow of a verse or of the rivers that course through the Kiyosumi and Shirakawa districts.

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