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DeathLAB: Democratizing Death

2018.7.7 (Sat.) - 2019.3.24 (Sun.)

DeathLAB, founded by Karla Rothstein at Columbia University in 2013, is an interdisciplinary initiative exploring the space and social consequence of urban disposition and memorialization. Housed at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, DeathLAB’s cross-cutting research engages diverse academic fields, including architecture, environmental engineering, religious studies and sociology. We will introduce the lab’s ongoing work, which intertwines sacred space and civic life.

Constellation Park 2014
©LATENT Productions and Columbia GSAPP DeathLAB

Starting Points: Japanese Art of the ‘80s

2018.7.7 (Sat.) - 2018.10.21 (Sun.)

As a repercussion of the conceptual and stoic art of the 1970s, and in response to trends in Europe and the United States, Japan in the ’80s bore witness to movements that urged the reinstatement of the painting and sculpture media. What came to prevail as a result was “New Painting” characterized by vibrantly colorful and dynamic brushstrokes that reflected the flourishing economic circumstances of the times. In the ‘90s, art thrived on the energy of ’80s subcultures such as “otaku,” but as a consequence, ’80s art faded from art historical discourse. In recent years both in Japan and abroad, rapid progress has been made in research on Postwar Japanese art up until the 1970s including “Gutai” and “Mono-ha.” Hence, we now find ourselves compelled to examine Japanese art of the intervening decade— the ’80s. Looking back, over 30 years later, we will see that art forms and concepts fundamental to today’s art blossomed in the ’80s, such as the art installation, viewer participation in the artwork, valuing relationship with society, the concept of alternative space, media art, perspectives of relativizing the institution of "art,” and the sensitivity to find significance in mundanity and lightness. This exhibition reconsiders Japanese art of the 1980s through contemporary perspectives and introduces works that represent “Starting Points.”

Aperto 08 Nanakarage Ayano

2018.4.28 (Sat.) - 2018.9.24 (Mon.)

Taking as her theme the vastness of nature seen in mountains and forests, and the ephemerality of rainbows and mist, NANAKARAGE Ayano (1987-) meditates on such natural phenomena and, blending in her own interpretations and analogies, evokes its qualities in wood sculptures. Her “rainbows edge” series, featured in this exhibition, conjoins her own fabric-draped figure with the shapes of dried banana stems and other dried and withered plants. Her fusion of withered and gnarled plants with smooth drapery (a human figure) conveys a disquieting impression of old age melded with youth or some bizarre creature hidden under the fabric. At the same time, the works evoke the serenity of Buddhist or Shinto deity sculptures as well as the dread of having seen something forbidden. Vibrant living organisms age with time and grow dry and gnarled, and slowly change form. In such transformation, Nanakarage discovers a transcendent beauty. Her eye, as such, has the power to refresh our values as people of contemporary society conditioned to look away from deterioration and decay.

rainbows edgeI 2015
©NANAKARAGE Ayano

Ay Tjoe Christine : Spirituality and Allegory

2018.4.28 (Sat.) - 2018.8.19 (Sun.)

Ay Tjoe Christine (b. 1973) was born in Bandung, West Java, Indonesia, and is a renowned contemporary artist active in Indonesia today. She studies intaglio printing methods such as drypoint and then turned to working with textiles. Her artistic activities got their real start around 2000. Ay Tjoe Christine’s works express themes based on Christian mythologies and spiritual concepts, supported by her deep insight into human incompletion and Janus-faced nature. The color fragments that scatter and float across her pictures reveal, on one hand, the actions of her own wavering emotions, while the abstract images that set up fascinating harmonies with the canvas’ negative space reveal her sincere stance as she investigates the relationship between humans and all things. This is Ay Tjoe Crhistine’s first solo exhibition at a Japanese museum, presenting about 50 works that trace her two decades of multifaceted creativity, from early period drawings and drypoint, to a group of oil paintings that explore the potential for expression from the representational to the abstract, soft sculptures and large-scale installations, and large format paintings created for this exhibition.

We Are Getting Highly Overrated Because You've Never Known Us 01 (detail) 2015
170x300cm Oil on canvas Private Collection
©Ay Tjoe Christine, courtesy of Ota Fine Arts

EVENT

Akram Khan: Chotto Desh

2018.8.17 (Fri.) - 2018.8.18 (Sat.)

Journey with a young boy through a mysterious, fairytale world
A summer-holiday dance treat for all ages, featuring the journey of a young boy with a cultural heritage spanning both Britain and Bangladesh, who dreams of becoming a dancer. Projection mapping and music are used effectively to portray a fairytale world, in a show as stunning for its visuals as its dancing. The “chotto desh” of the title is Bengali for “small homeland.”

Venue :
Theater 21/ 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa

Photo: Richard Haughton

Ito Kaori: Je danse parce que je me méfie des mots / I dance because I do not trust words

2018.8.4 (Sat.) - 2018.8.5 (Sun.)

Estranged father and daughter bridge a gap to reunite
"I  dance because I do not trust words" is a duet by dancer and choreographer Ito Kaori and her father, the sculptor Ito Hiroshi. Enjoying a stellar career in France, Ito Kaori put together a work that addresses head on her relationship with her father, in order to restore something that had been lost. Estranged due to a gulf that had arisen between them, father and daughter join forces here to express in dance an intimate relationship that is distant, yet close.

Venue :
Theater 21/ 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa

Photo: Gregory Batardon