Mori Art Museum Presents 'Roppongi Crossing 2013: OUT OF DOUBT', 9/21
To celebrate the 10th anniversary of its inauguration, Mori Art Museum is pleased to present "Roppongi Crossing 2013: OUT OF DOUBT" from Saturday, September 21, 2013 to Monday, January 13, 2014.
Staged by the Mori Art Museum triennially since 2004, "Roppongi Crossing" is a series designed to offer a comprehensive survey of the Japanese contemporary art scene. For the 4th edition, and the first time in the series, 2 young guest curators from overseas have been invited to join the Mori Art Museum curator in co-organizing an exhibition that examines Japanese contemporary art today from a global perspective.
The title of the exhibition "OUT OF DOUBT" raises questions concerning the kind of productive debate we can generate from doubts cast over accepted notions and existing systems at a time when social awareness is high in the aftermath of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake. The exhibition will feature 29 artist groups, focusing on those born from the 1970s through the 1980s, although in the interests of re-examining Japan historically, an attempt will also be made to cross generations and engage with artists who have been the driving forces behind Japanese post-war avant-garde art. And by not limiting the scope in a geographical sense to Japan, but rather actively broadening its horizons to include expatriate Japanese artists and artists of Japanese descent, the exhibition will also examine the cultural boundaries of Japan.
10 years have passed since the inauguration of the Mori Art Museum. In a world that continues to change dramatically, we hope that this exhibition will not only throw into relief the current state of Japanese contemporary art but also provide the impetus for opening up new possibilities into the future.
Born 1937 in Kanagawa, lives and works in Tokyo Born 1981 in Hyogo, lives and works in Australia Born 1978 in Kanagawa, lives and works in Kanagawa Born 1977 in Fukushima, lives and works in U.S. (AE) Born 1972 in Tokyo, lives and works in Tokyo (MS) Born 1974 in Tokyo, lives and works in Tokyo
Born 1980 in Akita, lives and works in Kanagawa Born 1979 in Shizuoka, lives and works in a car, "Go for Future" Born 1982 in U.K., lives and works in Germany / Mexico Born 1979 in Wakayama, lives and works in Tokyo (IS) Formed in 2012, active in Tokyo and West Bengal, India (Prominority) Born 1976 in Nara, lives and works in Tokyo Born 1978 in Kyoto, lives and works in Kyoto Born 1972 in Tokyo, lives and works in Tokyo Born 1977 in Tokyo, lives and works in Tokyo Born 1976 in Gunma, lives and works in Kanagawa Born 1980 in Tottori, lives and works in Ibaraki Born 1978 in Osaka, lives and works in Tokyo Born 1938 in Tokyo, lives and works in Kanagawa Born 1932 in Shizuoka, lives and works in Tokyo Born 1983 in Tokyo, lives and works in Kyoto Born 1982 in Aichi, lives and works in Tokyo Born 1978 in Aomori, lives and works in Belgium Formed in 2011, active in Fukushima Born 1976 in Kyoto, lives and works in Australia Born 1980 in Kanagawa, lives and works in U.S. Born 1978 in Okayama, lives and works in Aichi Born 1944 in Iwate, lives and works in Shizuoka Born 1975 in U.S., lives and works in U.S. Born 1977 in Australia, lives and works in Australia Born 1959 in Fukuoka, lives and works in Hiroshima
Organizer: Mori Art Museum Curated by: Kataoka Mami (Chief Curator, Mori Art Museum), Reuben Keehan (Curator of Asian Contemporary Art, Queensland Art Gallery| Gallery of Modern Art), Gabriel Ritter (Assistant Curator, Dallas Museum of Art) Grant from: Embassy of the United States, Fondation Franco-Japonaise Sasakawa Corporate Sponsors: OBAYASHI CORPORATION, KAJIMA CORPORATION, KINDEN CORPORATION, SANKEN SETSUBI KOGYO CO., LTD., SHIMIZU CORPORATION, TAISEI CORPORATION, Panasonic Corporation Artist Support: COLOR SCIENCE LABO Inc., DINAONE Corporation, HAPS, TOKYO COLOR KOGEISHA Inc., TOMEIDO Support: Champagne Nicolas Feeuillatte, BOMBAY SAPPHIRE Venue: Mori Art Museum, 53F, Roppongi Hills Mori Tower, 6-10-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo OpenHours:10:00-22:00|Tue:10:00-22:00|*Admissionuntil30minutesbeforeclosing. *Openeveryday.
The Latest Topics of "Roppongi Crossing 2013" Exhibition (1) A traditional mud-wall house of the Santali people of India will take shape in Roppongi Hills Mohri Garden!
Artist Iwata Sohei traveled to India in 2008 initially to study, and spent a total of 4 years living in the country, during which he collaborated with local villagers he met in a Santali ethnic minority village in building a water tower, a village library, housing and so on. He established an art collective "Prominority" in 2012, aiming to become a platform connecting ethnic minorities of the world and artists, while rethinking the meaning of modernization through various activities. For this exhibition, 5 Santali people have been invited to take part as Iwata Sohei x Prominority will together build a Santali mud-wall house using traditional construction methods. Construction will begin in late August in the Mohri Garden within Roppongi Hills - a symbol of urban living - and is scheduled to finish in time for the opening of the exhibition.
(2) In conjunction with the exhibition-related program "Discursive Platform," we will facilitate and make public a "discussion" on the relationship between art and society
In recent years, "discursive platforms" have spread throughout the country. Groups including those that provide opportunities for discussion irregularly and with no fixed location and NPOs that implement their own educational systems are creating platforms bringing together young artists and art fans, for example, with the aim of exploring relationships between art and society different from those of the art museum, institution, and gallery system. Implemented as collaboration with these groups, this program will involve researching the current state of their activities and bringing their representatives together at the "Roppongi Crossing 2013" venue to discuss the main issues each of them faces. Based on the understanding that "words" are a form of expression, as with the other exhibits the discussion will be open to the public as part of the exhibition, as a result of which we hope not only to throw into relief the various issues facing the Japanese art scene but also to provide the impetus for opening up new possibilities into the future.
( 3 ) Endo Ichiro is seeking his new, Mirai-e-maru (Go for Future Boat) building project supporters (investors) via crowdfunding!
One of the participating artists, "Future Artist" Endo Ichiro, has been travelling across the country to spread his positive messages and sleeping in a car called Mirai-e-go on which he encourages people to write down their hopes and dreams. Following the Great East Japan Earthquake, the artist in 2012 launched "RAINBOW JAPAN" project where he began touring the islands of Japan for months at a time using the islands as his canvas to write encouraging messages with his GPS tracking signal. This summer, however, he kicks off "RAINBOW JAPAN 3" that involves building the ship Mirai-e-maru (Go for Future Boat) aboard which he plans to take to the seas. Endo seeks the project supporters (investors) - the public can become investors in this project by purchasing tickets in 5 denominations ranging from 3000 yen to 300,000 yen. In turn, investors will receive various privileges depending on the value of the ticket they purchase. Further details are available on the following website: http://motion-gallery.net/projects/rainbowjapan3
"Questioning the Current State of Japanese Contemporary Art" * Japanese-English simultaneous interpretation available
How do today's Japanese artists confront the events and happenings taking place in the society around them? How does their perspective on those things affect their sense of actuality, and how is that in turn reflected in their artworks? For this panel discussion, the exhibition curators welcome two special guests: Hayashi Michio, an art critic deeply versed in Western art history, and Kuraya Mika, who' s curated the Japan Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale this year.
Speakers: Kuraya Mika (Chief Curator of the of the Department of Fine Arts, The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo), Hayashi Michio (Professor, Faculty of Liberal Arts, Sophia University), Reuben Keehan (Curator of Asian Contemporary Art, Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art / "Roppongi Crossing 2013" Co-curator), Gabriel Ritter (Assistant Curator, Dallas Museum of Art / "Roppongi Crossing 2013" Co-curator), Kataoka Mami (Chief Curator, Mori Art Museum / "Roppongi Crossing 2013" Co-curator) Date & Time: 19:00-21:00, Sunday, September 22, 2013 (Door open: 18:30) Venue: Academyhills (49F, Roppongi Hills Mori Tower) Capacity: 300 (bookings required) Admission: General ¥1,000 MAMC Member free Organizers: Mori Art Museum, Academyhills Bookings: Will start from 11:00, August 14 [Wed] on the Mori Art Museum website. www.mori.art.museum
Expatriate Japanese artists talk about the artworks in their own words Artists' Relay Talk * Japanese-English simultaneous interpretation available
Visiting artists will talk about their own artworks in the gallery.
Speakers: Akira Akira, Arakawa Ei and Minamikawa Shimon, Okumura Yuki, Takasaka Masato, Tajima Mika, Ryui Koji Date & Time: 17:00 -20:00, Saturday, September 21, 2013 (Door open: 16:30) Venue: Mori Art Museum Capacity: 80 (bookings required)
For "Roppongi Crossing 2013," 4th in its series of exhibitions, in order to gain a global perspective on the status of Japanese contemporary art, two overseas curators - Reuben Keehan (b. 1976, Queensland Art Gallery| Gallery of Modern Art) and Gabriel Ritter (b. 1980, Dallas Museum of Art) - both in their 30s and both well- versed in the Japanese art scene will join with Mori Art Museum Chief Curator Kataoka Mami to organize the show.
(2) Attempt at facilitating dialogue between the artists born in the 1970s and '80s, and those of the generation that experienced Japanese art in the postwar years.
In post-quake Japan, the realness of expression from the period spanning Japan's postwar revival to the 1960s, during which social systems and values were themselves undergoing a seismic upheaval, seems to resonate especially. Most of the "Roppongi Crossing 2013" artists were born in the 1970s and '80s, but through their dialogue with those of a different generation, we will gain new insight into the present day. Examples will include juxtaposing work by Nakamura Hiroshi (b. 1932), part of the reportage painting movement of the 1950s, and that of Kazama Sachiko (b. 1972).
(3) Actively introducing expatriate Japanese artists and artists of Japanese descent, including some exhibiting in Japan for the first time.
By targeting artists of Japanese descent either resident or born overseas, "Roppongi Crossing 2013" will step outside Japan as a geographical or political framework to expand the idea of Japan as a culture. Examples include Takasaka Masato, Ryui Koji, and Akira Akira from Australia, and Tajima Mika, Sasamoto Aki, and Arakawa Ei, from New York. Exhibiting artists will include those making their Japanese debut as well.
(4) "Roppongi Crossing 2013: OUT OF DOUBT" will consider the critical stance on the relationship between art and society, from historical and political perspectives.
The exhibition will consider the relationship between art and society through the works of, among others, Nakamura Hiroshi, part of the 1950s reportage painting movement leading up to Kanko Geijutsu ("Sightseeing Art" ); Yanagi Yukinori, who since the globalization of the 1990s has taken a consistently critical stance on capitalism and modern values; and among the younger generation, figures such as Koizumi Meiro and Arai Takashi. Meanwhile, artists such as Akasegawa Genpei, Izumi Taro and Niwa Yoshinori that attempt to overturn existing values by using satirical and nonsensical expressions cast various perspectives.
(5) A fresh look at the ancient Japanese views of nature and invisible energies.
Amid today's conscious fear of the superhuman power of nature, and awareness of environmental changes on a global scale, "Roppongi Crossing 2013" will reconsider the meaning of modernization, taking as a departure point traditional Japanese views of nature, animist beliefs and so on. Examples will include the relationship between form, space and process etc. as seen in the practice of one of the leading "Mono-ha" artists Suga Kishio; Nakamura Yuta, who thinks specifically about ceramics through the social history of tiles; Iwata Sohei, who contemplates the meaning of modernization mainly through his work with the ethnic minority groups in India. In this exhibition, 5 Santali people have been invited to take part as Iwata Sohei x Prominority will, using traditional construction methods, together build a Santali mud-wall house at Mohri Garden within the Roppongi Hills - a symbol of urban living.
(6) Attempt at relativizing recent Western interest in postwar Japanese art and global interest in performative practice, process, and post-object art.
Amid growing international interest in postwar Japanese art such as "Gutai" and "Mono-ha," on the global art scene, attention is increasingly shifting away from works that are "mono" i.e., "things" in their completed form, to the likes of performative practice, the predominance of the production process, and expression that transcends the object. "Roppongi Crossing 2013" will explore the correlations between these, focusing primarily on the practice of overseas-based artists.
Staged by the Mori Art Museum once every 3 years since 2004, "Roppongi Crossing" is a series designed to offer a comprehensive survey of the Japanese contemporary art scene. The 4th in the series, "Roppongi Crossing 2013," coincides with the 10th anniversary of the inauguration of the Mori Art Museum, and as such, in addition to looking back over the last 3 to 4 years, it seeks to examine from various perspectives the extent to which it is possible to position and relativize Japanese contemporary art both amidst broader historical and social contexts and vis-à-vis an increasingly global international art scene.
The title of the exhibition, "OUT OF DOUBT," raises questions concerning the kind of productive debate we can generate from doubts cast over existing systems and vested interests, including all manner of social systems and information media as well as the political system and social conventions that have been in place since Japan's modernization, at a time when social awareness is high in the wake of the anarchic situation in the immediate aftermath of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake in which no one seemed in control. The title is also ambiguous, since it can be interpreted as referring to "something arising from doubts" or "the state of clarity that arises when doubts are dispelled." The Japanese subtitle of the exhibition, kitarubeki fukei no tameni ( "For a Landscape to Come" ) derives from Nakahira Takuma's 1970 photo book, For a Language to Come. Through his photography, Nakahira has consistently asked searching questions about the relationship between the world and himself, and the form art and photography should take. For Nakahira, the "landscape" took the form of a world, environments, cities, and even social systems that needed to be confronted. Nakahira talks of "urban rebellion," bywhichhemeans"anunlimitedpersonalactofaggressionagainstthe'landscape,'"? buttoday,whenthis "landscape" is collapsing and very much subject to doubt, we would like to use this exhibition as an opportunity to question, over and yet again, the meaning of this statement.
For the first time in the series, 2 young curators from overseas have been invited to work on "Roppongi Crossing," with Reuben Keehan (Curator of Contemporary Asian Art, Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art) and Gabriel Ritter (Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art, Dallas Museum of Art) joining Mori Art Museum Chief Curator Kataoka Mami as co-curators. This edition will feature 29 artists / artist groups. In generational terms, the focus will be on artists born from the 1970s through the '80s, although in the interests of re-examining Japan historically, an attempt will also be made to engage with artists from key movements in post-war Japanese art who, viewed from the perspective of rather young artists above mentioned, seem critically real. As well, by not limiting the area of activity of the artists in a geographical sense to Japan, but rather actively broadening our horizons to include expatriate Japanese artists and artists of Japanese descent, we will also examine the cultural boundaries of Japan.
The participating artists are chosen in line with a number of loosely defined contexts determined by considering Japanese contemporary art from the kinds of perspectives outlined above and in light of post-war history, modern history, the ancient Japanese view of nature, and global trends. 1) Revisiting social and historical contexts
Amid renewed questioning of the values that underpin society and the involvement and participation of the individual in society, we will explore the extent to which light and dark aspects of the major upheavals and changes in Japanese society that occurred in the transition from the post-war reconstruction to the period of rapid economic growth in the 1960s and '70s, and globalization since the 1990s have been reflected in artistic practice, with a particular focus on how people today view the relevant historical and political contexts.
After looking at such examples as 1950s reportage paintings to 1990s critiques of the global economy, we will consider the extent to which artists today are attempting to set up a dialogue between the past and the present. Furthermore, we will also attempt to set up a dialogue in an art historical context involving artists from different generations. 2) Nonsense
We will also focus on the lineage of nonsense as it pertains to art, which is underpinned by the decadent and rebellious spirit of modern Japan that has been the driving force behind contemporary Japanese popular culture. This overlaps with the indirect critical attitude towards historical and social contexts mentioned above, but here we will question the effectiveness today of methods of overturning shared values, such as those in which appeals to the masses were made using absurdity and irrationality, as seen in the ero-guro nansensu ( "erotic, grotesque, nonsense") art of the 1930s and the avant-garde art of the 1960s, for example.
3) The Japanese view of nature and invisible energy In the wake of the 2011 Earthquake and Tsunami, issues surrounding the Fukushima Nuclear Plant in
particular have highlighted the ineffectiveness of progressivist values based on rationality and the prioritizing of economics, while at the same time one could also say they have aroused an awareness of the invisible world as alluded to in the ancient Japanese view of nature and religious beliefs. Such views are consistent with a monistic view of the world that strives for a balance between mutually opposing energies, and represent the very values Japan and the rest of Asia can offer the world today. Here we will re-explore these perspectives by focusing on such things as the "Mono-ha" movement of the late 1960s and beyond, the technical / craft aspects that continue to be a feature of Japanese art, and the fluidity discernable in sculptural expression.
4) Post-object The focus on the non-material, non-fixed values of artworks is also consistent with the trend towards
performative practice and post-object expression discernable in the global art scene in recent years. The worldwide attention directed towards movements such as "Mono-ha" and "Gutai" is probably also related to this current. As well, we will seek to consider the practice of artists based outside Japan and the relativization of tendencies observable inside Japan from this perspective. Attention will also be given to discussions concerning such things as process and product, visual expression and performativity, and the effectiveness of repeatability and re-creation.
All the above are intricately intermeshed and find expression amidst a state of antagonism in the practices of the participating artists. Accordingly, rather than being classified as representative of one or another of these perspectives, the selected artists will be presented in such a way that their expression gives rise to a spatial, visual, and conceptual dialogue within the actual exhibition space.
10 years have passed since the inauguration of the Mori Art Museum. Amid today's rapidly changing global political, social, and economic positions and relationships, where is "Japanese contemporary art," and what will be demanded of it in the next 10 or 20 years? We sincerely hope that "Roppongi Crossing 20113: OUT OF DOUBT" will not only throw into relief the current state of Japanese contemporary art but also serve as a platform of sorts for discussions that will continue into the future.