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Looking forward through photography

Mar 15, 2016

Looking forward through photography

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The spectacular landscapes left by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami have been used as source material by photographers to an extraordinary degree. Yes, using the words “spectacular” and “landscape” here may seem indecent, but this is one of many difficult issues ...

Robert Morris and Kishio Suga's piece in conversation

Mar 15, 2016

Robert Morris and Kishio Suga's piece in conversation

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There are just two installations in the exhibition “Robert Morris and Kishio Suga” at Blum & Poe’s fifth-floor gallery in Harajuku: Morris’ “Lead and Felt” and Suga’s “Parameters of Space.” However, there are a number of correspondences between these two artists that make their ...

Fujiwara wants the dirt to stick

Mar 8, 2016

Fujiwara wants the dirt to stick

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White often seems to be used in contemporary art in Japan as a kind of short cut to signify “beauty,” “purity” or “spirituality.” Simon Fujiwara’s show “White Day” at Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery is, as the title suggests, overwhelmingly white, but it’s designed ...

A round trip to Takeoka's world

Mar 8, 2016

A round trip to Takeoka's world

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“From a Pedestal into Space,” at The National Museum of Art, Osaka (NMAO), is Yuji Takeoka’s first major retrospective in Japan, featuring works from the 1980s to today. On entering the museum’s vast gallery space, you will find it populated with minimalist sculptures of ...

Geographic profiling may reveal identlty of elusive artist Banksy

Mar 5, 2016

Geographic profiling may reveal identlty of elusive artist Banksy

The elusive street artist Banksy may have been unmasked by mathematics. Scientists have applied a type of modeling used to track down criminals and map disease outbreaks to identify the graffiti artist, whose real name has never been confirmed. The technique, known as geographic ...

The dyeing art of Japan's traditional everyday kimono

Mar 1, 2016

The dyeing art of Japan's traditional everyday kimono

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Weaver and dyer Fukumi Shimura’s (b.1924) inherited an interest in craft from her mother, Toyo Ono, who made inroads through the early 20th-century mingei (folk crafts) movement led by philosopher Muneyoshi Yanagi. Introduced to the lacquer artistan Tatsuaki Kuroda in 1956, Shimura began to ...

Annie Leibovitz: Looking at the smaller picture

Mar 1, 2016

Annie Leibovitz: Looking at the smaller picture

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By way of introducing herself at the press preview of her new touring exhibition, “Women: New Portraits,” Annie Leibovitz says, “I love photography so much.” It seems like an oddly disingenuous thing to say for someone who is perhaps the most well-known and accomplished ...

Takashi Murakami collects more than just his thoughts

Feb 16, 2016

Takashi Murakami collects more than just his thoughts

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“Takashi Murakami’s Superflat Collection” is an exhibition of other people’s work, amassed as the result of one man’s phenomenally successful artistic career. It’s evidence that Murakami must have done something right, or wrong, depending on your view of culture. He’s sometimes portrayed as a ...

'Zakka: Goods and Things'

Feb 16, 2016

'Zakka: Goods and Things'

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Feb. 26-June 5 During Japan’s postwar economic boom, the term “zakka,” which literally means “uncategorizable things,” was usually used for mundane everyday tools and objects such as kettles, brooms and buckets. Since then, it has evolved to mean miscellaneous goods of a much broader ...