Hiroe Komai Kyoto, Japan


The series of Finnish House Paintings was produced during my artist in residency in the Finnish National Park of Koli in the middle of Winter 2015.


My daily routine was strolling around the village and the forest with snow shoes, even though the temperature was minus 20 degrees centigrade. During my stroll I noticed that sometimes I came across the old houses in the middle of the forest. These houses are built using reddish-brown wooden logs and each windows has a decorative frame. They were standing quiet but dignified, and many of them have been standing for more than 100 years. Some houses were moved from their original locations and rebuilt in new places, some houses were renovated and people are still living in them, some houses are abundant and becoming ruins...

Hiroe Komai (b. Kyoto, Japan) painted this series of watercolours while staying in the Finnish National park of Koli in the middle of winter. Her daily routine was walking around the village and park in -20 degrees.⁣ During her walks she noticed several old, forgotten houses, observing how they had been built using wooden logs and stood, quiet and dignified, in the landscape. Komai discovered that the houses had been standing for more than 100 years. Fascinated, she painted them in an exploration of the village's history and folklore.⁣


Hiroe Komai has exhibited extensively in London and internationally and her work can be found in a number of national and international collections, including the Gunnar Sachs Collection. In 2016 she completed a residency and had a solo exhibition in Košice in Slovakia. In 2012 she was awarded the commission for a major architectural public commission in Kyoto, Japan. In 2020 she exhibited bronze sculptures at JGM, alongside painter Colin Smith.