But why goldfish? During a time he was struggling with his art, Fukahori suddenly found inspiration for this new way of sculpture in none other than his very own pet goldfish. In his blog, he recalls the moment:
"12 years ago, on the day when I was at my most depressed and thinking of giving up my dream of painting, my attention was inadvertently caught by the single red goldfish that I kept in the room. It was a shabby, common Japanese goldfish that I had kept for 7 years. Opening the lid of the filth-covered aquarium, I watched as the goldfish wiggled around. Its back glittered red in the water and I was captivated by its beauty. I thought: “Why has it taken me so long to notice this beauty? This little fish will surely save me.” I then began to paint goldfish and now, 11 years later, I am still painting them." (The rest of his blog is in Japanese, but this excerpt was translated by RocketNews24).Fukahori's charming little fish made their debut in London at the ICN Gallery earlier this year in a show appropriately titled "Goldfish Salvation". The pieces come in different sizes, ranging from tiny boxes containing a single fish to larger barrels containing a whole school. They sell for up to £33,000. The video below shows the artist at work and the amount of detail that goes into each fish.
"Goldfish Salvation" Riusuke Fukahori from ICN gallery on Vimeo.