Son et Lumière, et sagesse profonde

2012.9.15(Sat.) - 2013.3.17(Sun.)



2012.9.15(Sat.) - 2013.3.17(Sun.)
10:00 - 18:00 (until 20:00 on Fridays and Saturdays)


21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa


Mondays, September 18, December 4 to 13, 25, 29 to January 1, 15 and February 12 (Open on September 17, October 8, December 24, January 14, and February 11)


■"Son et Lumière, et sagesse profonde"
On the day
Adult : ¥1,000
University : ¥800
Elem/ JH/ HS : ¥400
65 and over : ¥800

Advance・group (20P and over)
Adult : ¥800
University : ¥600
Elem/ JH/ HS : ¥300

■Dual Ticket for "Son et Lumière, et sagesse profonde" and "Do Ho Suh -Perfect Home"
On the day
Adult : ¥1,700
University : ¥1,400
Elem/ JH/ HS : ¥700
65 and over : ¥1,400

Advance・group (20P and over)
Adult : ¥1,400
University : ¥1,100
Elem/ JH/ HS : ¥600

Available between November 23 and March 17, 2013

Advance Tickets:

Ticket PIA (Tel 0570-02-9999)
P code:
[Exhibition ticket] 765-301
[Dual ticket] 765-303
Lawson Ticket (Tel 0570-000-777)
L code:
[Exhibition ticket] 55332
[Dual ticket] 55339
*Period of sales: From August 15 to March 17 (From October 23 for the Dual Tickets)

For More Information:

21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
Phone: +81-76-220-2800
Facsimile: +81-76-220-2802

On the face of it, it seems that modern civil society has secured freedom and material abundance through economic development, science and technology. In our information-oriented society, speed, comfort, and convenience are regarded both as beneficial and wholesome values. At the same time, however, in order to facilitate the pursuit of these benefits, human life has become more and more regimented. In other words, we are controlled by the institutions and authorities of the society to which we belong. The earthquake and tsunami of March 2011 and the Fukushima nuclear disaster completely undermined the sense of security, happiness, and freedom that form the foundations of society. The economic, social, and other systems that democratic societies have chosen in order to realize human freedom have become threats to the very survival of human society.
"Son et Lumière, et sagesse profonde" (Sound and light, and wisdom) explores the potential for humans to confront head on the contradictions in the world and remain standing in the midst of such despair. Some of the artists whose work is on show direct a piercing gaze at human society and bring to light the festering matter. Others embrace despair itself, using methods that can only be described as semi-masochistic to depict individuals who are determined to survive against the odds. Their expression exposes the fabric of a human society that is destitute and helpless. They see in despair the seeds of the future, and in the human condition an existence possessed of a life force that is fleeting yet struggling to survive amidst a maelstrom of suffering and chaos.

(KITADE Chieko, curator of 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa)

Related Projects

Directed by Pipilotti Rist, Film Pepperminta

Special Film Screening
Date / Time :
Saturday March 16, 2013, 16:00 〜 17:30
Sunday March 17, 2013, 14:00 〜 15:30
Venue: Theater 21, 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
Admission: No charge (with same-day ticket to this exhibition)
Directed by: Pipilotti RIST
Screenplay: Chris Niemeyer, Pipilotti Rist
Camera: PIerre Mennel
Visual Effects Supervisor: Davide Legittimo
Music: Anders Guggisberg
Cast: Ewelina Guzik, Sven Pippig, Sabine Timoteo, Elisabeth Orth

Artist Talks

Date / Time : Saturday, September 15, 2012, 13:30 〜 17:00
Venue: Lecture Hall, 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
Participating Artists: AKIYAMA Yo, KIMURA Taiyo, SAITO Makoto, TASHIIMA Etsuko, USHIRO Ryuta (Chim↑Pom)
Admission: No charge (with same-day ticket to this exhibition)
Capacity: 60
Language: Japanese

UMEDA Tetsuya Performance

Date: Saturday, September 15, 2012, 18:00 〜
Venue: Gallery 6, 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
Admission: No charge (with same-day ticket to this exhibition)
Capacity: 60

”Sunset – Sunrise Ark” Light Court Project Special Lecture

Date: Sunday, September 30, 2012
Lecturer: Patrick BLANC, HIBINO Katsuhiko
moderator: KITADE Chieko (Curator, 21st Century Museum of Cotemporary Art, Kanazawa)
Venue: Lecture Hall, 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
Admission: No charge (with same-day ticket to this exhibition) Capacity: 60

SUZUKI Hiraku Live Drawing

Date / Time: January 26 (Sat) 2013, 10:00 - 20:00
Venue: “Son et Lumière, et sagesse profonde” exhibition venue and other locations, 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
Admission: No charge (with same-day ticket to “Son et Lumière, et sagesse profonde”)
Event Direction: Suzuki Hiraku
Guest Musician: Ueno Takashi (Tenniscoats)

Artist Profile

  • SUPER RAT, 2011-12
    © 2011 Chim↑Pom
    Courtesy of MUJIN-TO Production, Tokyo


    Artist collective consisting of Ellie, USHIRO Ryuta, HAYASHI Yasutaka, MIZUNO Toshinori, OKADA Masataka, and INAOKA Motomu launched in 2005.
    Chim↑Pom have garnered attention from the start for their creative practice that exposes, through an ultra-individualistic pursuit, problems facing the world and dark spots by means of ultra-direct interventions in which they themselves participate and document in photographs and video. In “SUPER RAT”, which could be described as the nucleus of their
    work, they recorded the act of catching rats that inhabited the downtown area using insect-catching nets. In 2006, at the time of the production in Shibuya’s Center Gai, Chim↑Pom produced self-portraits using “super rats” immune to poison as a result of the continual attempts to exterminate them, who they identified with as survivors of life in the city. The work in this exhibition was produced in Shinjuku after the nuclear accident in 2011, which is the motif of the work. Amidst the threats to our environment and our way of life, the work emits an animated life force and captures it as an image of the human beings that are to come.

  • Capricho 62. Who Would Have Thought It!, 1797-98
    etching, burnished aquatint, and burin
    H20.5×W15.0 cm
    Photo: WATANABE Osamu

    Francisco de GOYA

    Born 1746 in Zaragoza, Spain; died 1828 in Bordeaux, France.
    Francisco de Goya studied painting under the tutelage of local painters, and from 1770, for approximately one year, learnt painting techniques including fresco painting in Italy. He moved to Madrid in 1773, where he worked in production of original drawings for tapestries. In 1786, he became painter for King Carlos III of Spain, and in 1789 became court painter for Carlos IV. In 1792 he fell ill and lost his hearing. He thereafter produced a large number of paintings, described today as Goya’s masterpieces. Although committed to the Enlightenment, during the period of upheaval in Spain from the 18th to the 19th century, he achieved Spain’s highest position as a painter, that of chief court painter. His paintings were about the evil in humans and in human society, their subject-matter including the effects of absolute monarchism, the French Revolution, and the Napoleonic War of Independence. In “Los Caprichos” (meaning caprice or free spirit), consisting of 80 works, he used witches, animals and anthropomorphic characters such as monsters shrewdly to lampoon the state, social authoritarians, politics, religion, and social conventions. In his following work, “Los Desastres de la Guerra” he confronts the barbaric acts that go by the name of war and pointedly criticizes its madness, hypocrisy and ugliness. Goya was a painter who, through his own kind of artistic expression, exposed the deception, greed and evil existing in the human world.

  • Feel Your Gravity, 2005
    H30×W23×D0.8cm, 8 pieces
    © KIMURA Taiyo
    Photo: SAIKI Taku

    KIMURA Taiyo

    Born 1970 and lives in Kanagawa, Japan.
    Since the early 1990s, Kimura Taiyo has been creating sculptures, installations, and video works using the kinds of materials everyone living in Japan comes across on a daily basis, such as milk cartons, garbage bags, and laundry baskets. Often combining a sense of physical incongruity and visceral displeasure with touches of humor and cruelty, his works represent an enquiry into the nature of human existence, which is one of the ongoing themes of Kimura’s creative activities. In Feel Your Gravity, multiple pictures of eyes were cut out of eight women’s magazines. The same cosmetics advertisements were chosen to front the work. By extracting only the human eyes from the pages of the magazines, the psychology of the crowd emerges, reminding us of the nature of life (under the supervision of systems) in controlled societies.

  • bacteria sign (circle), 2000
    earth, dead leaves, acrylic on wooden panel
    © SUZUKI Hiraku

    SUZUKI Hiraku

    Born in Miyagi, Japan in 1978. Lives in Kanagawa, Japan.
    Suzuki Hiraku, who had been exploring expression using sound such as field recording, gradually began to create two-dimensional visual works using soil and leaves as materials. Working across awide range of media, including live painting, installation, wall painting, drawing on paper, and video, what remains consistent throughout his artistic practice is his pursuit of drawing or line-making as an expression of the scene of creation, or becoming, through his close relation to familiar materials and environments. The some 80 square format ‘drawings” that
    comprise bacteria sign (circle), shown in this exhibition, were his
    first foray into visual expression. A variety of circular lines and shapes, which emerge through his excavation-like act of laying earth, burying dead leaves, and scraping their veins, show the moment and the place of becoming.

  • Son et Lumière - Le rayon vert, 1990
    flashlight, turntable, plastic cup, adhesive tape
    H25×W40×D16 cm
    © Peter FISCHLI David WEISS
    Photo: WATANABE Osamu

    Peter FISCHLI David WEISS

    Peter Fischli Born 1952 in Zurich, Switzerland. Lives there.
    David Weiss Born 1946 in Zurich, Switzerland. Died there in 2012.
    Peter Fischli and David Weiss started working together since 1979. Endowed with a punk attitude arising from their rebellion against the ruling structure at a time when the art world was dominated by such concept-driven movements as minimalism and conceptualism, they focus intensely on familiar scenes and things, and expend vast amounts of time and energy on their work while restricting themselves to the use of familiar materials, clear-cut mechanisms, and their own technology. Their work mixes the massive and the minute, the ordinary and extraordinary, reason and irrationality, order and disorder to
    expose the true nature of human society.

  • Dinos und Adolf V, 2008
    Aquarelle and ink
    © the artist
    Courtesy White Cube

    Jake & Dinos CHAPMAN

    Dinos: Born 1962 in London, England; Jake: Born 1966 in Cheltenham, England. Both live in London.
    Both Jake and Dinos Chapaman graduated from London’s Royal College of Art in 1990, and started working together after serving as assistants to the artists Gilbert & George. In 1991, they produced the highly acclaimed diorama Disasters of War, based on scenes depicting the torture and malformed bodies in Goya’s “Los Desastres de la Guerra” series of copperplate engravings. They continue to reference famous historical paintings (including those of Goya), social theory and
    philosophy in their delicate and elaborate sculptures, paintings and etchings on the subject of Nazism, the Holocaust, religion, fascism, and the consumer society. Their expression that places brutality and salaciousness at the fore uncovers instinctive human desires and shows an attitude of skepticism and scathing criticism towards Western and capitalist society.

  • Fountain of Life, 2001
    fiber reinforced plastics, lacquer,
    urethane, motor, water
    colletion of the artist
    © Yoshitomo Nara
    Courtesy Tomio Koyama Gallery
    Photo: UCHIDA Yoshitaka

    NARA Yoshitomo

    Born in Hirosaki, Aomori, Japan in 1959. Lives in Tochigi, Japan.
    After completing a Master’s degree at Aichi Prefectural University of Fine Arts and Music, Nara Yoshitomo moved to Germany in 1988 and in 1993 completed the Meistershüler program at Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. Basing himself in Cologne, he began receiving international acclaim for his paintings, drawings, three-dimensional works, and installations that feature sulky-looking children and animals. In 2000 he returned to Japan, and has since held numerous exhibitions both at home and abroad. In recent years, he has branched into three-dimensional ceramic and bronze objects. This exhibition presents his 2001 sculpture, Fountain of Life. Feelings that lead to anxiety, sadness and anger are awakened in the tears spilling from the eyes. As if
    foreseeing the spirit of human beings with no place to go, in a society of fear and mistrust, it perhaps reflects even more the spirit of people living in the world today.

  • Pulse Room, 2006
    incandescent light bulbs, voltage controllers,
    heart rate sensors, computer and metal sculpture
    dimensions variable
    © Rafael LOZANO-HEMMER
    Photo: FUKUNAGA Kazuo


    Born in Mexico City, Mexico in 1967. Lives in Montreal, Canada
    and Madrid, Spain.
    Rafael Lozano-Hemmer focuses on temporary relations to place, time and people by using electronic technology and interfaces on which body movements work directly. He develops large-scale interactive installations, which actually relate to a building or place. His projects, in which technology and history coexist and a concept of movement are strongly reflected, expose the importance of communication latent in urban space, and explore the formulation of new relations. Pulse Room, is a work in which the heart beat of each person experiencing it is converted to the rhythm of a flickering light bulb. The space is illuminated with approximately 300 incandescent light bulbs, each having a different flickering rhythm. As suggested by Lozano-Hemmer’s likening of this work to a memento mori, the lights suspended in midair are indicative of an aggregate of vital forces while also calling to mind the impermanence of existence.

  • Numa, 2010
    (Installation view at Kiraku-tei)
    © UMEDA Tetsuya
    Photo: Ujin Matsuo

    UMEDA Tetsuya

    Born in Kumamoto. Lives in Osaka.
    Umeda Tetsuya began doing performances in the first half of the year 2000. He participated in the Festival Beyond Innocence in 2002, and the exhibition “sun and escape” in 2005. Since then, he has been involved in a wide range of activities both in Japan and overseas including participation in live performances and exhibitions, and collaborations with musicians, performers, and artists. He places himself within the space, listens, explores the relationship between the flow of the music and the body, and using the energy from atmospheric pressure, water pressure, gravity, electrical currents and heat combined with familiar consumer electronics and everyday items, produces something by a method that incorporates mechanical errors and the unpredictable behavior of people and natural phenomena. In doing so, he draws out the potential existing within the space itself, causing impromptu phenomena that “perform” the light, sound and movement of things. Within the form that is captured in all of the installations and performances is created a unique area with sound at the center and in which time and space intersect.

  • Sea Breeze, 1992
    iron, stainless steel, shutter, mercury lamp, caster,
    wheels, ventilator, flashing lamps
    H350 × W480 × D250 cm
    Collection 21st Century Museum of
    Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
    © 1992 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd.
    All Rights Reserved.
    Photo: FUKUNAGA Kazuo

    MURAKAMI Takashi

    Born in Tokyo, Japan, in 1962. Based in Tokyo, Japan, and New York, USA.
    Murakami Takashi studied Nihon-ga (Japanese-style painting) at Tokyo University of the Arts before going on to complete a doctorate at the same university in 1993. Since unveiling his works using Japanese-style painting and plastic models at his first solo show in 1989, Murakami has persistently challenged the dominant structure of Western art by emphasizing the uniqueness of Japanese culture as represented by things like anime, manga and otaku culture. His activities are not limited to creating artworks, as he continues to develop new situations in the
    Japanese art scene by engaging in collaborations with the fashion industry, planning numerous exhibitions, and presiding over the GEISAI art fair, among other things.He staged a large-scale solo exhibition in Qatar in 2012. In one of the works, a large-scale painting titled Five Hundred Arhats, three meters high and 100 meters long, is depicted a Japan that is moving forward amidst the distortion and despair of Japanese society. Sea Breeze is representative of his early work. It consists of a large, box-like structure inside of which 16 mercury-vapor lamps are arranged back-to-back in pairs so that eight face each side to resemble rocket jets. Despite its imposing appearance and mechanical nature, this work captivates audiences in an instant
    and is brimming with an almost intoxicating energy.

  • Light, 1952
    ink, pastel, crayon on paper
    Collection 21st Century Museum of
    Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
    © Yayoi Kusama
    Photo: SAIKI Taku

    KUSAMA Yayoi

    Born in Matsumoto, Nagano, Japan in 1929. Lives in Tokyo,Japan.
    Kusama Yayoi, whose career stretches back more than 50 years, has had a major impact on the art world both in Japan and overseas. She began exhibiting work in Japan in the early 1950s before moving to the U.S. in 1957. She based herself in New York, creating installations and staging various performances. In the 1970s she returned to Japan, where she continues to live and work. Starting out from paintings that depicted her own experiences from childhood, she has gone on to produce large two-dimensional, three-dimensional, and installation pieces, her trademark repeating and multiplying polka dots and nets
    representing her unique outlook on the world.

  • Ever Is Over All, 1997
    audio video installation
    by Pipilotti Rist (video still)
    Courtesy the artist, Hauser & Wirth and
    Luhring Augustine
    © Pipilotti RIST

    Pipilotti RIST

    Born in Rheintal, Switzerland in 1962. Lives in Zurich, Switzerland.
    Pipilotti Rist creates highly individualistic works, drawing on her command of media ranging from graphic design to photography, video and animation, and her experience playing in a rock band. Her work features extreme close-ups of parts of the body, often deliberately at angles producing distortion and discomforting the viewer, or else portrayal of radical or comical behavior, which she fuses with Pop-like flowing, color-infused music and video, reminiscent of music videos. Although her works combine grotesqueness and incongruity to jarring effect, Rist views people with a compassionate eye. Ever Is Over All is a video installation spanning two screens as a continuous space. Close-ups of vividly blooming flowers are juxtaposed with the scene of woman walking with a wide gait humming softly as she smashes the windows of parked cars one after another. Through the skilful employment of music and video technology is depicted the beauty of human beings attempting to move lightly through our chaotic times in a world that is, on the one hand, powerful and radical, and light and airy on the other.

  • "Sunset – Sunrise Ark" Light Court Project

    For this project, the entire courtyard in which botanist Patrick Blanc's permanent exhibit Green Bridge is installed will be turned into a space devoted to plants. Morning glories, a species that is the subject of
    Blanc's research (and a species that is important to him), will cover the paths and walls of the courtyard. Blanc will choose the morning glory varieties/seeds and design the layout, and with the addition of Seeds from “Asatte Asagao Project 21”, a work created as part of “Asatte Asagao Project 21”, which was undertaken at the museum in 2007 by Hibino Katsuhiko, the site will take on a completely new
    appearance with morning glories filling multiple layers of space time with "symbiosis" as a keyword. The growth of plants and the fruition of this as represented by seeds will be reduced to an anonymous presence in the form of biological activity itself, an activity that encompasses time, region, and memory.

    Sunset – Sunrise Ark: NEWS PAPER TIMES From HIBINO Katsuhiko:
    In the museum courtyard, we will publish a newspaper printed with memory of the morning glories raised in the courtyard in 2012. The 10m x 9m paper will change day by day under the effects of the light, rain, and winds that fill the courtyard. These changes we will perceive as a newspaper that reports each day’s information.

    ・Period: January 4 to March 17, 2013
     ※Note: To view the newspaper, a ticket to “Son et Lumière, et sagesse profonde” is needed.
    ・Number of copies: 1 (size: about 10m x 9m)
    ・in cooperation with: Marujyu Paper Company

  • Patrick BLANC

    Born in Paris, France in 1953. Lives there.
    Obtained a Docteur d’état ès Sciences in 1989. A botanist as well as an artist, Patrick Blanc noticed
    while carrying out research on the ability of plants to adapt to their environment that they are able to
    grow even under extremely limited conditions, which led him to embark on a series of works known as
    ‘vertical gardens’ in which he covers exterior walls and other surfaces of buildings with special felt into
    which he then plants vegetation. Examples of his work can be found at the Cartier Foundation for
    Contemporary Art and the Quai Branly Museum in Paris.

  • HIBINO Katsuhiko

    Born in Gifu, Japan in 1958. Lives in Tokyo, Japan.
    Hibino Katsuhiko first attracted attention in the 1980s with his artworks made from cardboard, and he
    subsequently went on to break new ground with his activities across various genres including graphic
    design, stage design, and performance. Since the 1990s he has held numerous workshops, the
    experiences of which have had a major influence on his own art practice. The experience of confronting
    the ‘self’ through encounters with the ‘other’, which Hibino refers to as the “HOME→AND←AWAY”
    SYSTEM, lies at the heart of his current activities.
    For more information


Organized by:

21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa (Kanazawa Art Promotion and Development Foundation)

Patronized by:

Embassy of Switzerland in Japan