Ryoko Suzuki uses highly constructed images to comment on the designated social roles of women living in contemporary Japan. The works in this series depict popular Japanese collector dolls, with the artist's face superimposed to create a life-like, uncanny image. These fantasy dolls, collected by men, depict the traditionally "appropriate" yet highly sexualized roles assigned to women, including nurse, schoolgirl and waitress. Reminiscent of animé, the distorted, unrealistic bodies of the dolls express the notion of the supercute, or 'kawaii', an idea that confronts the cute but often erotic portrayal of women in Japanese comics, advertising and toys. Using digital means, Suzuki creates a fictional self-portrait that challenges the world of fantasy with the reality of her own image, offering a humorous, ironic response to prevalent stereotypes of Japanese women.
Ryoko Suzuki has exhibited extensively in Japan, China, Korea and Germany. She was recently included in the group exhibition Global Feminisms at the Brooklyn Museum and has works in the collections of the Shanghai Art Museum, the Tokyo Museum of Photography and the Brooklyn Museum.