James Jean’s Woodcutter meets Haroshi’s GUZO in a first-of-its-kind collaborative print.
Once strangers on opposite sides of the world, a kinship between the two artists ensued after noticing similar motifs in their work online. Both were riffing on traditional Japanese woodwork, and ideas for a collaborative edition soon followed.
Axe thrown over his shoulder, a defiant Woodcutter emerges from the forest with a freshly-felled GUZO under his arm. Faces look out from the wheels of his rippling skateboard, inspired by the tree-dwelling Kami spirits said to assist hunter-gatherers in Japanese folklore. The distinctive patterning of GUZO's body is derived from recycled skateboards – stacked, glued and carved by Haroshi to create his sculptures – and calls to themes of community and counter-culture.
"It’s uncertain whether he stole or rescued a much coveted Guzo, but what is clear is that he is a trespasser, and he has an expression of defiance as he pushes his way through a passage less travelled."
Each print is produced by Lamina, founded by James Jean and Brad Keech. The embossed prints are delicately finished with metallic foil, placing an emblem for each artist above his signature.