These surreal wood sculptures by Japanese sculptor Yoshitoshi Kanemaki will become so much more impressive once you see how much work it took to make them! For one of his latest sculptures, an otherwise-ordinary girl with 12 faces, Kanemaki created a series of progress photos that show the sculpture’s progress from crude log to finished work of art.


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Thanks to the reference lines he draws on the log as it’s gradually whittled down by chisels and saws, we get to see how the strange girl depicted emerges from an otherwise formless mass of wood.

This bizarre sculpture isn’t even his strangest – all of Kanemaki’s peaces involve strangely twisted characters, many of which dance with skeletons as well. These twisted statues all seem to bespeak some sort of emotional or existential turmoil churning beneath their surfaces. Read on for Kanemaki’s answers to Bored Panda’s questions about his work!

More info: Behance | Facebook | bunkyo-art.co.jp (h/t: juxtapoz)

“I am trying to stimulate people living in this time to pay attention to the significance of being ‘alive’ and ‘human,'” Yoshitoshi Kanemaki told Bored Panda. “I think that asking that question is more important than answering it. I hope my work will be a stimulus to ask that question”

“There are traditional techniques cultivated from old times in Japan where Japanese have been living. I have learned and always applied them for the basis of production of my work. I am pouring ‘time’ and ‘questions’ into fundamental wooden techniques so that I can create works”

“I produce not only life size sculptures but also small works which can even fit in a palm. In addition, I produce big size sculptures which are much taller than a human’s height”

“There are many ideas everywhere; for instance, while I am driving a car, playing with my son, and so on. I should always be tuning my feelings and trying to catch ideas, and not miss them”

Thank you, Yoshitoshi Kanemaki, for answering our questions about your work!