IMAI Takahiro was born in 1986 in Gunma, Japan. He graduated from Tama Art University in 2009. Imai first started to do oil painting when he was in middle school. He entered the school’s art club and began to paint with oil paints more vigorously and decided to further study more about painting in high school. After he learned about the technical aspects of oil painting in high school, he started to study and explore how to paint portraits in his own style.

Imai works with traditional oil painting techniques and commonly captures the shading of light, which gives a provocative and melancholy atmosphere to his art. His female portraits possess a sense of mystery and otherworldliness due to their soft and quiet facial expressions and body language. Imai expertly managed to capture the moment of the subjects in deep thoughts through his paintings.

Imai explained, ‘A photograph is able to capture a moment in the past, yet paintings are able to capture anywhere and anything in existence. Paintings neither belong to a particular space of time nor are they about to express universal existence.’

Imai focus a lot on the quality of this works and only produces a few exclusive artworks each year. He had participated in international exhibitions such as the Young Art Taipei 2011 and Art Beijing 2012. He is currently an associate member of Hakujitsukai, an exclusive group of artists focused on Western art.