Naomi Okubo’s paintings sometimes read more like quilts: chunks of contrasting patterns, pieced together into a larger, colorful image. On an abstract level the brightness of her work is enough to draw the eye, and her subject matter offers a depth with its implied eerie narratives. Girl clones gather together in a room together. A woman rests, facedown on her desk. Little red riding hoods gather together to face the wolves.

Okubo says her work comes from an inferiority complex, the result of her adolescent experiences. She says, “When I changed my own image, people changed their attitude toward me... I have been interested in appearances ever since.”

Okubo lives in Tokyo, and she’s fascinated with both the mass media ubiquitous there as well as Tokyo’s extreme fashion and lifestyle choices. She says people consume mass media images so much that “we become confused about what is real and what is contrived. The consequence is that we become addicted to them.”

Images courtesy of gallery MoMo.