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Contemporary art trends and news from Asia and beyond

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Archive for the ‘Japanese’ Category

Performance of Asia tops West for first timers at auction in 2008/09

Posted by artradar on November 17, 2009


AUCTION PERFORMANCE

It may be of some surprise that Asian artists have outperformed their Western counterparts in “first time auction results” during the height of the art market boom. According to ArtPrice’s 2008/2009 contemporary art market report, buyers are giving Asian artists new to the auction market stronger backing than new Western artists.

This support is evident in the high proportion of Asian artists achieving the top hammer prices:  64% of the “top 50 best hammer price for new auctioned artists in 2008” were given to Asian artists predominantly from China, Japan and Korea.

Of the top 10 best first-timer hammer prices, half were given to Chinese artists born between 1949 and the early 1960s. The top price of Euro 347,510 was given for a work by the artist You Jindong (b 1949)  known for his works created with gunpowder.

 

 

top 50

© ArtPrice, TOP 50 Best hammer price for new auctioned artists in 2008

Out of the three main Asian countries (China-24, Korea-4, Japan-3) represented in the list, Chinese artists’ prices have had the most dramatic reduction from the high point in 2008. Although times are different now, the price correction within the contemporary Chinese art market has significantly lowered the price barriers for collectors. It is considerably more economical to purchase “new auction artists” in 2009.

So Hing Keung

So Hing Keung's photograph titled "Central, Hong Kong, 1998" sold for USD 4,515 at Sothebys in Hong Kong on October 6th, 2009

In recent Sotheby’s auction in Hong Kong on October 6th, the average price for a Chinese “new auction artists” was drastically lower at USD 12,000 compared to USD 130,000 during the previous year. In addition to Chinese contemporary art, the price barriers for contemporary Japanese and Korean art remains accessible in the current market.

Lee Kyoung Mi

Korean artist Lee Kyoung Mi's painting titled "San Francisco on the Table" sold for USD 12,255 at Sothebys in Hong Kong on October 6th, 2009

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Posted in Auctions, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Market watch | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Murakami’s Geisai Miami cancelled, Geisai Taiwan debuts this December

Posted by artradar on October 29, 2009


INTERNATIONAL ART FAIRS

takashi_murakami

Takashi Murakami

The contemporary Japanese art guru Takashi Murakami is continuing to shape the infrastructure of the art world through his biannual Geisai art fair, which Murakami intends to expand to multiple international cities. The Art Newspaper reports that Geisai Taiwan, to be held in Taipei, will replace Geisai Miami this December. The new Geisai Taiwan event is planned to have more than 200 exhibition booths for new artists. In contrast, the cancelled Miami event was structured differently, presenting only 21 new artists in 2008 which a panel selected from a pool of applicants. The event was originally intended to coincide with Art Basel Miami.

Regarding the cancellation,  the spokesperson for Murakami’s company commented:

” We would not say that Geisai Miami has been cancelled, but rather that we are simply building on our desire to expand the Geisai event/concept worldwide.”

Geisai has been highly successful in Japan, growing each year since its 2002 Tokyo inception and repeatedly attracting 1,000 participants and 9,000 visitors for the one-day event.

Geisai is produced by Murakami’s company Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd., and is intended as a platform to discover new artistic talent.

Soichi Yamaguchi, whose art now commands high prices, entered Geisai as an unknown artist and cites his win at Geisai #9 in 2007 as the turning point in his career  that helped him find gallery representation. The Japanese event has taken on a festival-like feel, and has been highly accessible for new artists, with booth fees starting at ¥25,000 (approximately $270 USD).

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Posted in Branding in art develops, Business of art, Connecting Asia to itself, Democratisation of art, Fairs, Japanese, Market watch, Miami, Taiwan | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Liquidity propels prices, Chinese Political Pop is back – Sothebys Contemporary Asian Art Auction 2009 Hong Kong

Posted by artradar on October 16, 2009


SOTHEBY’S AUCTIONS HONG KONG CONTEMPORARY ASIAN ART

Although called a Contemporary Asian Art auction, this sale was dominated by Chinese artists which was a canny move by Sotheby’s given that mainland liquidity is driving prices of property in Hong Kong to record high prices of US$1,000 per square foot and sending Chinese stock markets soaring. According to Bloomberg, Chinese money supply has grown by 55% since the beginning of 2007 compared with 20% in the UK and US.

Some of this liquidity has found its way into the art market at this auction. Mainland buyers were active and revealed some surprising preferences.

Hong Kong artists back in a second showcase

Sotheby’s followed up its inaugural and successful showcase of 8 Hong Kong artists in the ‘Spring auction earlier this year with an expanded selection of works by 10 artists. Affordable prices meant that all but two of the works found buyers with successful bids mostly coming in around estimates.

Simon Go, Hong Kong Old Shops, Inkjet on Bamboo Paper

Simon Go, Hong Kong Old Shops, Inkjet on Bamboo Paper

Works by two artists, sculptor Danny Lee and photographer Simon Go who were both new to the auction this year, did better than estimates. Danny Lee produces stainless steel sculptures which are reminiscent  – though in a more organic liquid form –  of the stainless steel scholar rocks made by the world-renowned sculptor Zhan Wang  whose works have been collected by institutions such as the British Museum . Danny Lee’s Mountain and Stream IV sold for HK$170,000 against a top estimate of HK$160,000 (before premium). (US$1 = HK$7.7)

Danny Lee, Mountain and Stream IV, Steel wood

Danny Lee, Mountain and Stream IV, Steel wood

Simon Go’s set of 2 photographic works called Hong Kong Old Shops: Wing Wo Grocery and Keng Ming Mirror Shop achieved a price of HK$80,000 against an estimate of HK$30-50,000 (before premium). This lot points to several collector trends. According to Larry Warsh, a New York-based dealer, there is a growing interest in Chinese photography and Wing Wo Grocery ( an image of a family clan in an old-style grocery shop from the colonial era recently shut down in preparation for urban renewal) embodies trends identified at an ArtInsight seminar last month called ‘Trends and Opportunities in Photography” . The panelists identified documentary photography and ‘slice of lif’e’ photography as hot areas for collectors now.

Zhan WangThe biggest story of the Hong Kong part of the sale was Tsang Tsou Choi’s calligraphy which saw excited bidding between several bidders in the room and on the phone resulting in a price (before premium) of HK$400,000 which was 8 times the lower estimate of HK$50,000. Work by this artist now deceased was also a surprising success in the Spring 2009 auction perhaps because of local media and public interest in the eccentric behaviour he displayed in his long art career.

Tsang Tsou Choi, Calligraphy, Acrylic on Canvas

Tsang Tsou Choi, Calligraphy, Acrylic on Canvas

In our Sotheby’s Spring 2009 auction post we wrote:

Tsang, Tsou Chin aka The Kowloon Emperor is a Hong Kong legend, famous for his calligraphy graffiti which he painted on public furniture. Undeterred by numerous warnings he roamed the streets for 50 years laying down his family genealogy and his personal history as an emperor in exile in blatant defiance of the Queen and English colonial rule. Deemed a lunatic by some, he was nevertheless recognised when in 2003 he became the very first Hong Kong artist to exhibit at the Venice Biennale.

Cynical Realist artists are back

In the next section of the sale a series of Chinese sixties-born artists, many from the Cynical Realist and Political Pop movements (Yue Minjun Feng Zhenghjie Zeng Fanzhi, Fang Lijun, Zhang Xiaogang) came under the hammer with hefty estimates of several hundred thousand and up to around $5 million per lot.

Yue Minjun, Hats Series - The Lovers, Oil on Canvas

Yue Minjun, Hats Series - The Lovers, Oil on Canvas

On a visit to London last month Art Radar heard several Western commentators describing Chinese art as ‘old’, ‘tired’ and ‘done’. This auction showed clearly that there are keen buyers for Chinese artists of this era who are willing to pay robust prices. Room bidders were mainly middle-aged Chinese men, who are perhaps collectors or more likely dealers for a growing middle class market in the mainland. Most lots in this section sold at estimate and some well above. Yue Minjun’s ‘Hats Series – The Lovers’ attracted several room bidders and a phone bidder eventually selling for HK$5.3m against a top estimate of HK$3.5m.

Institution-endorsed Chinese artists of the  fifties and sixties meet price resistance

Wang Keping, Untitled, Wood

Wang Keping, Untitled, Wood

It is no secret that Western critics regard some of the Cynical Realist artists as lightweight and lacking in intellectual rigour.  Instead major institutions such as the Royal Academy and British Museum in London have favoured and endorsed other mid-century born artists such as gunpowder artist Cai Guo-Qiang and Xu Bing, famous for his invented calligraphy . These artists sold well at lower price levels but lots with high estimates met resistance and failed. Cai Guo-Qiang’s Money Net No 2, part of Royal Academy of Art Project (estimate HK$4.7m – 5.5m) and Xu Bing’s Silkwom Series – The Foolish Old Man Who Tried to Remove the Mountain (estimate HK$5m – 5.5m) were bought in.

Frowns for part-increment bids

What we did see at this auction was a much stronger resistance by the two auctioneers in this marathon four-and-a-half  hour sale to partial bids. In recent auctions we have seen bidders make counter-offer bids at increments lower than standard. In the recent past these were accepted with alacrity by genial auctioneers. At this auction bidders were left waiting, frowned at and as often as not turned down.

Zhang Huan upset

Zhang Huan, My New York, Chromogenic Print

Zhang Huan, My New York, Chromogenic Print

Zhang Huan

, formerly a performance artist and more recently a sculptor and installation artist known for his works in ash and animal skins had 5 lots in the sale. Despite  backing by big-boy galleries in London and New York (Zhang Huan currently has an installation at White Cube in Picadilly London) four of his works including two sculptures and two chromogenic prints were bought in. The only work which was successful was a chromogenic print (numbered 3/8) recording his early endurance performance art which sees him running barefoot along the streets covered in raw meat. This work exemplifies another trend identified at the Artinsight photography seminar: growing interest in photographic documentation of performance art.

Sculpture mixed

Sculpture had a mixed performance. Apart from Zhang Huan’s two failed lots and one by Hong Kong artist Kum Chi Keung, there was a surprise pass on Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s pink polyester mannequin Self-Obliteration (estimate $550-650,000). Most of the rest of the ten or so sculptures including Wang Keping’s wooden female forms, Zhang Wan’s scholar rocks, kitsch sculptures by the Luo Brothers and Huang Yan and a run of five works featuring sculpted heads  and figures (by various artists) sold at or above estimate.

Li Hui, Amber Dragon, Neon and steel

Li Hui, Amber Dragon, Neon and steel

Two lots by neon and steel sculptor Li Hui (1977) were highly sought after and attracted across-the-room bidding. Both pieces were purchased by an Asian family who were active bidders in the preceding sale of South East Asian art. The family also acquired an acrylic on canvas by Japanese artist Hiroyuki Matsuura and another by Ryuki Yamamoto. Traditionally collectors’ interests cluster geographically and more often than not collectors prefer to buy their national artists though there have been signs of changes. Despite the recession there is still momentum  behind this trend of pan-Asia buying.

Chinese photography fluid bidding

A handful of photographs were scattered through the sale but the bulk was found in an eleven lot run in the middle.  This run featured sixties-born Chinese photographers such as Hai Bo, Hong Hao, Wang Qingsong, Huang Yan, Cang Xin and Sheng Qi who were active in the nineties and many of whom came to international prominence in 2004 with Christopher Phillips’ seminal exhibition Between Past and Future at the International Center of Photography in New York. Since then major US institutions have been collecting the work of this group as we reported in April 2009:

Hai Bo, Red Guard, Chromogenic Print and Gelatin Silver Print

Hai Bo, Red Guard, Chromogenic Print and Gelatin Silver Print

The J. Paul Getty Museum is the latest institution to add works by Chinese contemporary artists to its holdings. Others include New York’s Museum of Modern Art, which recently acquired 28 works for its photography collection, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, and the Brooklyn Museum, as well as global institutions such as the Tate and the Pompidou Center.

“The acquisition of these works (Wang Qingsong, Hai Bo) affirms an important new direction for the Getty,” says noted photography dealer and collector Daniel Wolf, who helped establish the museum’s collection in the 1980s. “It reflects an interest in expanding the collection in this category.”

Prices were affordable and bidding was fluid. While editions were limited to the 8-20 range and many of the lots were made up of multiple images, sales were made at estimates which were surprisingly affordable. Most lots sold for between HK$40-75,000. Wang Qingsong’s triptych photograph Past Present, Future which sold at estimate for HK$260,000 was the exception.  One buyer snapped up several lots.

One upset was lot 765 by Cao Fei which was passed in. Her works are inspired by the internet, video games, role-playing and the virtual world and she has received wide coverage in London and beyond after a recent show at Battersea Power Station organised in conjunction with the Serpentine Gallery.

Japanese and Korean art

The sale was dominated by Chinese artists but there was a run of cartoon-style art, many by young Japanese artists, a third of the way through the sale which sold at prices HK$50-150,000. Heavyweight Japanese artists were priced much higher but did not always sell or meet the estimate.  Yoshimoto Nara’s It’s Everything sold at HK$3.3m compared with an estimate of HK$3.8-HK$5m. Work by Yoshitaka Amano (described by Time Out as ”the Japanese anime legend behind the Final Fantasy video game” and who attracted spirited phone bidding in the spring sale 2009) was passed in. Takashi Murakami was the exception achieving HK$520,000 for an untitled 1/50 edition screenprint carrying an estimate of just HK$50-70,000. Korean works also achieved mixed results.

Long long auction

The final run of 11 lots saw 6 passes despite affordable prices. This result is probably not worth analysing in depth as it likely had more to do with the numbing length of the 4-5 hour 2 auctioneer sale which saw a packed room of 200 or so dwindle away to 30 or 40 tired stalwarts at what felt like the dog-end of the sale. Perhaps Sotheby’s who charged for coffee and catalogues again this year is still in cost-slashing mode. Let’s hope that by next year there will be enough new money supply for a return to more coffee breaks and free coffee.

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Posted in Auctions, Business of art, Cai Guoqiang, Cao Fei, Cartoon, China, Chinese, Hong Kong, Hong Kong Artists, Japanese, Korean, Li Hui, Market watch, Photography, Sculpture, Takashi Murakami, Xu Bing, Yayoi Kusama, Yoshitaka Amano, Yue Minjun, Zeng Fanzhi, Zhang Huan, Zhang Xiaogang | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

A different kind of real – Gesai winner Yamaguchi Soichi’s international solo debut in Hong Kong – interview

Posted by artradar on October 14, 2009


JAPANESE CONTEMPORARY ART

'Pose' by Yamaguchi Soichi, 2009. Acrylic on Canvas. 145x145 cm.  $20,250. USD. Inquire with the Madhouse Gallery, Hong Kong.

'Pose' by Yamaguchi Soichi, 2009. Acrylic on Canvas. 145x145 cm. $20,250. USD. Inquire with the Madhouse Gallery, Hong Kong.

Yamaguchi Soichi is a bright creative star who has surpassed his own expectations and found recognition and success early in his career as a contemporary Japanese artist. Indeed, he only graduated from the Tokyo National University of Art and Music in 2007, but he has already caught the attention of the guru of Japanese contemporary art himself, Mr. Takashi Murakami, and was chosen from hundreds of hopeful young artists to receive the coveted Gesai #9 Gold Award in 2006.  His cheerful yet introspective works beg the viewer to escape from a mass universal perspective, and offer a glimpse at a world that he hopes will ‘cause a question, and make you think about what is unknown.’

A journey began with the Batman logo

Yamaguchi is a quiet and soft spoken 26 year old, and is not a natural urbanite, preferring the Japanese countryside and activities like fishing to hustle and noise. He admits that he believes he sees the world differently than others, and discovered this in unlikely circumstances about 10 years ago. Believe it or not, Soichi says his artistic journey started while pondering the ‘Batman’ logo, those outstretched black webbed wings, which he mistook for a gaping open mouth. His ‘mistake’ of seeing something else prompted him to further expore why he sees differently, and the fruits of his discoveries are currently on display at the Madhouse Gallery in Hong Kong, in a solo exhibition titled ‘The Way You Look.’

First international solo exhibition

Soichi’s Madhouse show is his first international solo exhibition, and also marks his first visit to Hong Kong. However, the emerging artist is well traveled, having visited Beijing, New York, and Brazil in the past 2 years. When asked about the cultural and spiritual background of Soichi’s art, he explained that his work is overtly Japanese, not consciously borrowing from other traditions, and has little deliberate religious or spiritual intention. Although many viewers believe his works are spiritually motivated, he is actually philosophically motivated. He explains:

‘People see things differently, according to their heart. People can see many things on a street, and each person will see things differently. What one sees, or pays attention to depends on the outlook of the individual. Although many people think the art is religiously motivated, this is not my intention.”

The use of the eyeball motif in Soichi’s work reinforces this idea of perspective.  He comments:

We see things differently, all from our eyes. The idea is that we see things differently and the eyes are a reminder that everything is from a different perspective.

Eyes, by Yamaguchi Soichi, 2009. Acrylic on canvas. 100x150 cm. $17,700. USD. Inquire with the Madhouse Gallery in Hong Kong.

Eyes, by Yamaguchi Soichi, 2009. Acrylic on canvas. 100x150 cm. $17,700. USD. Inquiries to the Madhouse Gallery.

Existence and an interconnected universe

However, the artistic concept from this promising young artist goes even deeper. He explains that another inspiration for his art is the idea of existence, interconnectedness, and universal expansion. He is inspired by the ‘other’ and is searching for an alternate form of reality to convey to viewers, because, he says:

Nowadays we have information from many networks, news and the TV, and everyone is getting the same information. This is a very dangerous thing. Art provides another vision of how to see things. It is very dangerous when everyone is looking at the same thing or the same road, because when a way is no longer good, it will collapse. This art is like an exit, and offers an escape from the mass perspective. It offers a different kind of real.

The ‘next step’ in Japanese art

The psychadelic, celebratory, and invigorating works of Soichi do indeed channel an otherworldly feel. For those collectors looking for an appealing investment, this young Japanese artist offers a visual look that is completely unique to Japan, which appears to be the ‘next step’ in the evolution of Japan’s surreal cartoon-like motifs. With Soichi being a newcomer on the international contemporary art scene, his works are still priced reasonably. There are some who are saying that for the investment-minded, Soichi’s work might be a promising buy.

Everyone, by Yamaguchi Soichi, 2009. Acrylic on canvas. 27x27 cm. $2,300. USD. Inquire with the Madhouse Gallery, Hong Kong.

Everyone, by Yamaguchi Soichi, 2009. Acrylic on canvas. 27x27 cm. $2,300. USD. Inquire with the Madhouse Gallery, Hong Kong.

Q & A with Yamaguchi Soichi

Which artists do you admire?

Japanese artists Tahami Kenishi and Nakamura Hiroshi.

How did you first begin marketing your work?  Who did you work with?

I began working with the Hiromi Yoshi Gallery in Tokyo. I networked at art conventions, and at Gesai I met my gallery.

How long does it take to produce an artwork?

Depends on the size. The painting may only take a certain amount of time, but before painting, I have to create the concept and make preliminary drawings, which can take a very long time. The actual process of physically painting a work may only take a month, but then ideas may pop into my head after awhile and I add onto it. It is all a work in progress for awhile.

Tell me about how you work? A typical piece?

I use a piece of paper to create the basic composition, making the shapes without color. Then I consider which parts should be dark and light, and finally decide the colors.

What kind of space do you work in?

I work in a mostly empty personal studio with white walls. The walls are covered with bits of paper with ideas written on them. Every time I get an idea I scribble it down and stick it to the wall.

When did you sell your first piece? Is it hard parting with your work?

I was 23 when I sold my first piece. I was so excited when someone offered to buy my work! I don’t mind parting with it, actually. I feel like the buyers of art will honor it and take good care of it. I think it goes to a good home.

What has surprised you the most about working in the arts?

I didn’t expect such a fast reception of my work—I am suddenly having international solo shows and conducting interviews only a year out of school. When I started my career I just wanted to create interesting art, and didn’t have any expectations of becoming famous. I was lucky to meet people who understood my concepts, but I don’t already consider myself successful. I want to do more.

What has been your biggest challenge in art?

The main challenge is how it will be perceived, and the initial impact of a work, in the first moment a viewer looks at it. Also, I send so many messages in one piece, a major challenge is how it should all come together.

What problems do you see for young artists today?

The current standard of the art market sometimes dictates what artists create, and artists should not change themselves to fit neatly into the market standard. Individuality is a strength.

In what ways are young artists today fortunate?

There are more ways to enter the industry now. Most of my friends have moved on to international destinations, like New York and San Fransisco, to start their careers. It may actually be too easy to enter the art world, since there appears to be too many artists who find success before they have found their voice. It is not ultimately good for artists to be shown in galleries when they have not yet discovered their main concept.

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Posted in Emerging artists, Gallery shows, Hong Kong, Interviews, Japanese, Painting, Prizes | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Renowned Japanese artist Hiroshi Senju chooses Hong Kong for his solo debut – interview

Posted by artradar on October 2, 2009


JAPANESE ART

Hiroshi Senju

It was the biggest night of the year at one of the most prominent art galleries in Asia. Hiroshi Senju’s opening of Out of Nature: Cliffs and Falling Water at the Sundaram Tagore Gallery in Central, Hong Kong has been planned for 2 years, and the gallery was naturally delighted to be selected by the renowned Senju to display his artworks. The gallery was so pleased because Hiroshi Senju is among an elite few of international artists who can have their pick of any gallery in the world to showcase their work, and it is notable that he chose Sundaram Tagore. However, more importantly, he also chose Hong Kong.

Senju’s Sundaram debut marks his first solo show in Hong Kong, which introduces the first 4 paintings in his highly anticipated Rocks and Cliffs series. Throughout the opening event, gallery staff nervously guarded Senju’s 16 signature waterfall paintings and 4 new cliff-themed works, as cheery guests sauntered dangerously close to the  $200,000+ (USD) paintings while sipping glasses of champagne.

For those who don’t know, Hiroshi Senju is an important player in the art world, and would be at the top of a hypothetical who’s-who among Asian artists, or all international artists for that matter. He was thrust into art stardom in 1995 when he became the first Asian artist to receive an award at the Venice Biennale while representing Japan, and he is now among the most celebrated contemporary artists in Asia. In 2003 he became the Director of the Kyoto University of Art and Design, where he also currently teaches art. He now splits his time between Japan and New York, spending about 8 months of the year in NYC working out of his intriguing converted-power-plant art studio.

In an exclusive interview, Hiroshi Senju discusses his career and inspiration with Art Radar. Read on to discover why he chose Hong Kong for his new series debut, why he doesn’t consider himself a Japanese artist or even particularly connected to Japanese culture, and what he believes is the greater purpose of contemporary art.

Hiroshi Senju, Waterfall, 2009, Natural pigments on Japanese mulberry paper, 90.9 x 116.7 cm

Hiroshi Senju, Waterfall, 2009, Natural pigments on Japanese mulberry paper, 90.9 x 116.7 cm. Image courtesy of the Sundaram Tagore Gallery.

Where did you grow up, and where were you educated? Were there any major influences or people in your life pushing you toward the arts?

I’ve lived in Tokyo since kindergarten, all the way to my graduate school. So, I’ve lived in Tokyo for a long time, and now I’m living in New York. I lived in a quiet suburban neighborhood, but my elementary school was far away, so I had to take trains and buses to go to school. My parents discouraged me from art. Since elementary school I went to a competitive private school, where there was no test to get into college. The university that I went to was very competitive, the children of politicians and business owners graduated from there, many who became politicians and doctors. My father was a famous economist and my grandfather was a famous medical doctor. My parents encouraged me to become a scholar or foreign diplomat. So, since elementary school I studied very hard to become that, and it was a surprise to them when I wanted to become an artist.

When did you know you were an artist?

I liked art since I was a child. My artwork was represented in my primary school every year, which was unusual, so since then I knew that I had some talent for art, but I never thought I would become an artist. When I started thinking about going to art school I was in high school, but there were so many choices, graphic arts, architect, product designer, so I had a hard time deciding what to become in the field of art. But when I was in high school one of the art teachers suggested I go to a certain exhibition. That exhibition was all done in the style of painting that I do now, which is ‘Nihonga’ style. So as a high school student I was very impressed with the pigments, and I decided I wanted to make art with these kinds of pigments.

In which countries and cities do you spend most of your time?

I probably spend the most of my time in an airplane, that means I travel a lot! But really, I spend about 2/3 of the year in New York in the studio, and 100 days in Kyoto where I am the president of the art university. Other than that I am traveling around the world looking for motifs, especially to Brazil and Argentina.

Do you have a deep connection to any other places or cultures other than Japan?

I don’t necessarily feel connected to Japan. I do not follow any certain culture, but a modern culture. We eat Indian, Chinese, and French food, we drink wines and sake. And sushi. This is what modern people are all about. I want to speak as a cosmopolitan, so therefore I do not necessarily want the audience to feel ‘oh, this is Japanese, or this is Chinese’. There may be some connections to German works of art as well. I try to keep an equal distance from all cultures. But, at the same time, I explained that I love the pigments and that’s why I started this kind of painting. I would like to connect to before the ages when all the people were divided, before the races were divided into east and west, before the culture was divided into east and west.

Which cultures and art scenes do you follow the most?

One thing I really like is 11th century Chinese art. So when I created this new series of work called The Cliff, I could have shown anywhere in the world, but I chose Hong Kong. I felt that the Hong Kong audience will be the most critical audience, since they have the traditions of the work that I love, 11th century Chinese art.

Which artists do you admire?

I admire Claude Monet, Max Ernst, Andy Warhol. All these masters created art and art history. I respect this and all the arts. If I had to choose one, which is very hard, I would choose the Italian Renaissance. Those people have left a big footprint in art history.

Which contemporary artists are you most interested in?

Since I am an artist I am most interested in myself.

What things inspire you?

The inspiration I value the most are the emotions that all humans feel. I value this not as an artist, but as a human being. Also, I like to read Haruki Murakami.

What are your favorite things to do when you are not making art?

I play with my kids, my 3 sons. They are 16, 15, and 12. They are in New York.

Why did you first start painting in the ancient style?

As I have studied oil and acrylic painting, I found this style had the most potential. The pigments themselves are extraordinary and paper is very attractive and has many possibilities. Mulberry paper is very strong, even if you tried to rip it you can’t. This paper has a long history in Japan. I didn’t choose this because it is Japanese, but having equal distance from all techniques, I chose this because it had the most potential.

How did you first begin marketing your work?

It was very difficult. Probably every artist remembers the first piece that was sold. When you think of creating a work to sell, it won’t sell. When you first creating a work that you don’t want to let go, that’s when people start buying.

Who are your major collectors?

Of course many buyers are in the Japan and U.S. Many entrepreneurs. I shouldn’t mention names.

How long does it take to produce an artwork?

Since I’m 51 years old, I can say that the work all took 51 years to create. What it means is that since I’ve lived 51 years, and it took this long for me to decide to use these pigments and find motifs to create the work. That is the most accurate. However, if you mean how long I actually spend creating a single painting, each one takes about a month.

Tell me about how you work? A typical piece?

When you start painting you should not spend too much time wondering. You have decided you are creating, and you put on your best efforts to create. I do not look at the cliff and say, oh, that is such a beautiful cliff, I want to paint now. It is different from that. I have emotions I want to express, and creating a cliff would exactly show what I want to say. That’s how I create them. First emotions, then the image comes. When I first look at the cliff there is an emotion I had, and with this cliff I can express my emotion. But that’s only 5% of the work. The other 95% of the work is communication between myself and the canvas.

There is a sculptor who sculpts from stone, and he says that all he does is get the art out of the stone. What he is going to create is sitting inside the stone, and all he does is get it out. When I create the work, the painting tells me what it wants me to do. I listen to the voice of the painting. It is nothing spiritual and isn’t an Asian concept– but most artists, I think this is how they create work.

What kind of space do you work in?

I use my studio, which previously was an electrical factory, or a power plant. It is so large there that my assistants carry the phones around so they can get to it in time when it rings. Previously I used the university’s art studio as a student. It is important to remember the humbling feeling of using the universitys art studio as a student. Students work out of pure love and joy for creation. It is important to keep that.

Where were you inspired to make this current Rock and Cliff series?

These cliff pieces are the first 4 in this series that I have created. I found these cliffs in my dreams, although I did sketch places in Argentina. I went to paint in Argentina during the summer to look for motifs like waterfalls.

What are your next projects?

I’m planning on making a national guest house, working with Mr. Tadao Ando, an architect. There are many more projects, for example an airport project, train stations, and a building in Singapore. I’m very happy and lucky that I have such exciting projects.

Is there a piece in the show especially meaningful to you?

These paintings are like my children, therefore I cannot differentiate one f’rom the other. I like each one of them, and that is my truth.

Hiroshi Senju, Waterfall 2009, Natural pigments on Japanese mulberry paper,  90.0 x 116.7 cm

Hiroshi Senju, Waterfall 2009, Natural pigments on Japanese mulberry paper, 90.0 x 116.7 cm. Image courtesy of the Sundaram Tagore Gallery.

Advice for Young Artists

Was it hard starting out? What advice would you give young artists and aspiring art directors?

First is confidence, second is courage, third is talent. Being confident and able to encourage yourself is more important than talent, because everyone has a talent. As long as you believe in yourself and encourage yourself, it will come through. I encourage everyone to pursue their dreams.

What mistakes do you think artists make most in terms of developing their careers? What should they be doing?

Artists can over value their work too much or think of their work too highly. However, at the same time you cannot undervalue it either. You must become objective.

How has the contemporary art scene changed since you began working with it?

The contemporary art situation changes depending on the economic situations in the world. Luckily I have been unaffected, but it is unfortunate the economy dictates the art scene. Since  I am connected to someone with great respect in the art world, I can stick to what I want to create. It is important to be connected to a good gallery.

Which Japanese institutions and galleries do you admire and recommend to art lovers?

First, Tokyo National Museum, and also the Kyoto University of Art. I am the president there, but I do not recommend it because I am the president- I took the job because I had so much respect for the institution.

How would you recommend artists approach galleries for representation and what advice would you give about having a good relationship with a gallery?

Be honest. Gallerists have known of many incoming artists to exaggerate or lie. So be honest and have good quality work. At the same time, you can’t sell rock music to an opera fan. You have to find the right dealer.

What problems do you see for young artists today? In what ways are young artists today fortunate?

The economic situation is a problem for young artists. Also, there is too much information. I think too many people are tied to the trends, and trends are created by someone else. As a young artist, you must find what you have and work with what you’ve got. But, being in the information age is an advantage, because you are able to show your work over the internet. A while ago you had to be in New York. When I was young I had to show something in New York, or else no one would see the work. Now you can create a homepage of your own, and you can submit your ideas through the internet to anywhere in the world.

Hiroshi Senju, Waterfall 2009, Natural pigments on Japanese mulberry paper,   90.0 x 116.7 cm

Hiroshi Senju, Waterfall 2009, Natural pigments on Japanese mulberry paper, 90.0 x 116.7 cm. Image courtesy of the Sundaram Tagore Gallery.

Contemporary Art: Why Is It Important?

What role do you think contemporary art plays in society?

To bring back memories of things you have forgotten, problems of ecology, the earth’s environmental issues, lack of communications, peace, this is the role of contemporary art. For example, my pieces are made out of all natural ingredients, the paper and pigments are natural, the glue is also natural. By using these natural materials I want people to see the powers of nature. Looking at the painting of the waterfall, I want people to appreciate the falling water as a beauty in itself. When I created the cliff I applied the pigment with a scrunched up paper. The scrunched paper is a fault to most people. However, I do not consider the imperfection a problem, but rather I find beauty in it. It’s about recycling, and bringing back the things that might have been scarred. I believe these concepts are very important for the 21st century. Do not throw out the paper because it is scrunched, but find beauty in its shapes.

What is your philosophy as an artist?  Why create art?

I find it a peace-making process. Like singers sing songs, it is a way of communication. When an artist shows work it is all about communicating. Art is all about communicating with everybody beyond religions and sexes. Therefore it is the peace-making process. I think that is the wonderful part of making art. There is a wisdom within it.

What do you think is the greater purpose of contemporary art?

It helps us understand that everyone has very different ideas, but we are all human beings. I believe that what I think is beautiful, you will think is beautiful also.

What are you trying to achieve or communicate through your art?

I want everyone to remember the concept of beauty, and it is sublime. In beauty I believe there’s a lot of power, which gives people encouragement and energy to live.

How do you want people to feel and think when viewing your works?

I want everyone to think like myself! I want everyone to think like how I feel about beauty.

Does water and the waterfall have a special significance to you?

For all human beings, the most important element is water. Deep inside, that’s why I wanted to create water.

What has been your biggest challenge in art?

My challenge is in creating and successfully showing every work. Now is the most important time for me. Every day is a challenge.

Skira, the leading Italian publisher, will release a monograph on Hiroshi Senju for worldwide distribution in fall 2009.

-contributed by Erin Wooters

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Posted in Gallery shows, Hong Kong, Japanese, Painting | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Newslink round up Art Basel 2009 – Indian, Japanese artists dominate coverage of Asians

Posted by artradar on June 24, 2009


ART FAIR

Much of the traditional coverage of Art Basel takes the same format: descriptions of some highlighted artworks are interwoven with information about sales generally and, dealers willing, specifically. From this gathering of anecdotal, far-from-objective evidence some kind of assessment of the buoyancy of the market is made.

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This year the consensus view emerges that, from a base of very low expectations and to the relief of dealers, sales were made and perhaps were even quite strong.

Blogs offer some alternative reporting – see in particular the Sojones blog about the fast-selling artwork “Simple Things” – made of everyday objects encrusted with tens of thousands of precious jewels – which was a collaboration between musician Pharrell Williams and Takashi Murakami. This post by a non-fine arts blog took one small element of the fair and provided a link-rich comprehensive report. This may be a glimpse of the future of arts reporting. We hope so because there remain many untold stories about the fair …

Other themes extensively reported by the papers and blogs included  Brad Pitt’s purchases. Less predictable was the wide coverage given to “Il Tempo del Postino“, described as a show in time rather in space and as the “world’s first visual arts opera”.

For a list of Asian artists given press coverage see the tags at the bottom. Their names are also highlighted in grey in the article descriptions. It is interesting to note that these were mostly Japanese and Indian.

Collectors pleased with Art Basel 40 FairJapan Times – 19 June – “Art market is surprisingly healthy” Sep 09 to Mar 09 was difficult for dealers but Basel has coincided with an uptick in activity. Sales by Hiroshi Sugimoto. Other Asian artists mentioned included veteran Yayoi Kusama, and new or under-rcognised artists such as Teppei Kaneuji, Ei Arakawa.

After Art Basel, dealers have high hopes for London salesWall Street Journal – 19 June – Fair organisers talked of ‘unexpectedly strong’ sales and dealers seemed happy though no final sales figure has been released. 61000 visitors the highest number ever.

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Recession appealThe Economist – 18 June – A piece about sales – “by all nebulous barometers, business in Basel was satisfactory, possibly even very good”. Sales included Indian artists Anish Kapoor, Raqib Shaw. Posits 4 reasons for buoyant sales: return of collectors in down market, discounting, diversion of money out of Swiss bank accounts and perception art a stronger asset class.

Art Unlimited Part 2 – Art Basel videoVernissage TV – 16 June – In this video walkthrough find works by Gabriele di Matteo, Li Dafang, Willem Boshoff, David Shrigley, Marcel van Eeden, Mel Bochner, Anthony McCall, Sigmar Polke, Steven Shearer, Lawrence Weiner, Goran Petercol, Aernout Mik, Stephan Balkenhol, Tatjana Doll, Chen Zhen, Natalie Djurberg, Sarah Oppenheimer, Bharti Kher, Falke Pisano, Clegg & Guttmann, Banks Violette, and Hans op de Beeck.

Art Basel Vernissage Arrested Motion – 16 June – Over 60 images of artworks

Jeppe Hein loop bench at Art BaselDesigncrave – 15 June – Good pics of this piece of large crossover art.

Pharrell Williams’ and Takashi Murakami’s “Simple Things” sold for more than $2millionSojones – 15 June 2009 – One of the most comprehensive pieces to cover the sale within 30 minutes of the opening of Simple Things, an artwork encrusted with 26,000 jewels by music man Pharrell Williams in conjunction with Takashi Murakami. A link to a great video interview with Farrell talking about the artwork.

 Art 40 Basel: Extraordinary quality, surprisingly strong results Art Basel press release – 14 June – This press release is a closing statement rounding up the fair’s achievements and successes. Lists artists who attended including Subodh Gupta. Over 50 museum groups attended. Over 61000 visitors, over 300 galleries from 29 countries, more than 2500 artists. “Il Tempo del Postino”

 

Art Basel 2009 – videoVernissage TV – 13 June – video walkthrough

Surprise success: Art Basel dispels credit crunch blues The Art Newspaper – 12 June – Lists celebrities and collectors present. Fewer American collectors mostly Europeans did the buying. “The recession compelled dealers to bring their best”. Everyone was “sniffing”‘ for discounts and if dealers were flexible sales were made. Long list of specific artwork sales made.

Window shoppers – seasoned collectors spend carefully at Art BaselWall Street Journal – 12 June –  A list of collectors who visited (American collectors: the Horts and Craig Robins) and art advisers (Sandy Heller who buys for Steve Cohen and Philippe Segalot adviser to Francois Pinault owner of Christie’s).  Also lists some of 101 artists who were also at Venice Biennale. Relief that some sales were made. Describes ways galleries saved money. Asian artists mentioned On Kawara, Subodh Gupta.

A Thriftier Lot comes to Art Basel this yearNew York Times – 11 June – This piece lists some of the artwork highlights on show and collectors and curators who attended. Art was more conservative than last year and focused on big rather than new names. Expectations so low that there was relief that some business was done.

Warhol price slashed as Art Basel fights slump with bargainsBloomberg – 9 June – Long 25 paragraph piece made up of snippets of market information based on gallery interviews. Leading para is about trimming of prices this year – other interesting comments: Art Basel will be 2 shows this year both work on show and discreet consignment sales on behalf of collectors; Kapoor prices holding steady, pure New York market gone with some dealers missing this year but still interest from Asia and some parts of Europe.

Art Unlimited – Art Basel video part 1 – Vernissage TV – 9 June – This year’s Art Unlimited exhibition of the international art fair Art 40 Basel in Basel, Switzerland, marks the tenth edition of Art Basel’s sector for large sculptures, and installation and video art. Works by Elisabetta Benassi, Yoshitomo Nara, Beat Zoderer, Sislej Xhafa, Ayse Erkmen, Pascale Marthine Tayou, Fabrice Gygi, Surdashan Shetty, Farhad Moshiri, Jesús Fafael Soto, Sterling Ruby, Laurence Weiner, Franz Erhard Walter, Steven Shearer, Nedko Solakov, :Mentalklinik, Natsuyuki Nakanishi, Stephan Balkenhol, and Matthew Day Jackson.

Editor’s Picks: Art Basel Preview Artinfo – 8 June – Useful link to an image carousel showing works being presented at 42 galleries, many with price information.

For art lovers Basel doesn’t end at the fairNew York Times Travel Section – 7 June – Long comprehensive post covering what to eat, where to sleep and what to see in Basel. Brief overview of Art Basel (40th anniversary, 300 galleries, 2500 artists, not much art after 1970s) and an interesting look at the exhibitions by museums (the result of 5 centuries of wealth and “public-mindedness”).

Locals Rule: Alternative Art spaces gear up for Art BaselArtinfo – 6 June – List of activities offered on Basel’s alternative art scene.

Basel, more than a fair cityNew York Times Travel section – undated – 9 enticing images of hotels and restaurants

The Art Market: the biggest fairs around the worldFinancial Times – Georgina Adams – 6 June – A few paragraphs of Basel coverage in this piece covering art fairs. Two distinguishing events at Art Basel: Art Unlimited an exhibition of large scale works in 12000 sq m hall and Il Tempo del Postino which sets time limits on art display. Two more paragraphs speculate about pricing strategies.

Meanwhile in Basel Contemporary Works you can buyWall Street Journal – 5 June – Short prefair description of event and some works

Related links: To see the online catalogue visit http://artbasel-online.com/

Related posts:

  • Newslink round up – Art HK 09 – May 09
  • Japanese photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto – 4 fascinating video interviews – May 09
  • Which 5 Indian artists would you dare to buy now? – May 09
  • Art Dubai 2009 – who sold what to whom? – Mar 09
  • Who are the top artists at art fairs? – Mar 09
  • Newslink round up Arco Madrid 2009 – Feb 09
  • Subscribe to Art Radar Asia for round ups of art news coverage

    Posted in Anish Kapoor, Bharti Kher, Collectors, Fairs, Farhad Moshiri, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Indian, Japanese, Jewel art, Market watch, Sudarshan Shetty, Takashi Murakami, Time | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

    Top 5 sites for Japanese contemporary art news by Matthew Larking

    Posted by artradar on June 24, 2009


    JAPAN ART READING

    What are the top sources of information about Japanese contemporary art?

    The Japanese art scene can seem impenetrable to non-Japanese speakers and yet, despite  this, there is a growing swell of global interest in contemporary art from Japan. There are several potential reasons:

    • Takashi Murakami, who has probably done more than any other artist ever to make contemporary art accessible. He has been astonishingly effective in widening the market for and interest in contemporary art globally;
    • the maturing of the art scene in Tokyo which has seen a new group of galleries open in the last fifteen years;
    • the wave of interest in manga and video games, spawned in Japan, which has swept across the world;
    • the ‘separateness’ of Japan whose monoracial, monolinguistic island society has developed its own cultural idiosyncrasies, creating ripe ground for art with a fresh perspective.

    So what is the best way to keep abreast of art news in Japan? We asked lecturer and, since 2002 Japanese Times art critic Matthew Larking, to give his recommendations about what to read to keep up to date.

    1. Tokyo Art Beat –   www.tokyoartbeat.com – “gives updates and everything else on the Tokyo art scene”

    From the website: “a bilingual art and design events guide which offers event listings, reviews and a shop. The site is updated daily and lists more than 500 current & upcoming art events, at any moment. Smart data organisation with events sorted by media, schedules, and location, as well as event lists like Closing soon, Most popular, Open late, and Free. Available via any PC or mobile phone.”

    2. ARTiT –  http://www.art-it.jp/e_index.php – “the ARTiT site has a few good interviews and bits and pieces here and there”

    From the website: “a visually oriented, all bilingual (Japanese and English) quarterly magazine introducing the latest trends in the contemporary art scenes of Japan and the rest of the Asia-Pacific region. ART iT features comprehensive interviews with topical artists, in-depth articles on current art-related subjects, and detailed information on exhibitions at top museums and galleries throughout Asia-Pacific.”

    3. PING MAGhttp://pingmag.jp/ – “now defunct but with some good archives is PING MAG which introduces a few artists who don’t get so much press in the usual places”

    4. Japan Timeshttp://www.japantimes.co.jp/entertainment/art.html “the Japan Times does a full page dedicated to the Arts every Friday, the only newspaper in Japan to do so and many of the writers are very good”

    5. Artscape Internationalhttp://www.dnp.co.jp/artscape/eng/

    From the website:  “a monthly English web magazine for readers both inside and outside Japan, but especially overseas, with an interest in Japan’s art scene and artists. With one of Japan’s most comprehensive art databases, Artscape compiles up-to-date information about art events throughout Japan, presenting reviews of exhibitions and articles about art trends and artists.”

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    Posted in Japan, Japanese, Manga, Overviews, Resources, Services, Takashi Murakami | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

    How a long recession helped Japanese contemporary art collector, Ryutaro Takahashi

    Posted by artradar on June 11, 2009


    Ryutoro TakahashiJAPANESE ART COLLECTOR

     A Japanese psychiatrist, Ryutaro Takahashi, has become one of the most important collectors of Japanese contemporary art, having amassed a collection of over 1,500 pieces since 1997. And, in an inspiring story we can all take heart from today, he was able to do so largely because of Japan’s long recession. The Japan Times explains:

    The late ’90s were particularly tough for dealers… because the long-running economic downturn had translated into severe funding cuts for public museums. The reason recent art is so underrepresented in the collection of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, for example, is that from 2000 to 2004 it had no acquisitions budget. Takahashi was able to snap up dozens of pieces while the nation’s museums went AWOL.

    Takahashi emphasises that he did not take deliberate steps to fill the void left by underfunded institutions. So what did motivate this collector and how did he get started?

    “I used to hang around Fugetsudo Cafe in Shinjuku,” he tells The Japan Times, describing the coffee shop that was a hippie Mecca during the counterculture years. “We’d hear about the happenings that Yayoi Kusama was doing in New York. She was like a star to us.”

    Takahashi was not an artist himself, but the period left him with a fascination for the avant garde.

    “In 1997 I saw an exhibition of new work by Kusama,” he says. “At about the same time, a show of new work by Makoto Aida was being held at Mizuma Art Gallery. So, in a short time I saw work by someone I thought was a star and also an important up- and-coming artist. That lit the spark within me.”

    The spark quickly flared into a wildfire.

    “Once I had bought a few I realized that if I was going to do this, I had to do it properly,” he says.

    He focused on young artists from Japan, spending Saturdays roaming cutting-edge galleries: Mizuma, Ota Fine Arts, Tomio Koyama. Soon he was plowing all his resources into the project.

     

    Makota Aida "A Picture of an Air Raid on New York City (War Picture Returns)" 1996

    Makota Aida A Picture of an Air Raid on New York City (War Picture Returns), 1996

    One of his first major purchases was Aida’s A Picture of an Air Raid on New York City (War Picture Returns), a giant screen-painting which depicts fighter planes forming an infinity symbol as they bomb New York. Since then he has bought about ten more Aida works.

    Usually, big paintings by such respected artists would find their way into public collections. But not in Japan, or at least not in the past ten years in Japan. The Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, has just one Aida, and the five national art museums have none.

    The story is similar with other 40-something artists such as Akira Yamaguchi, Hisashi Tenmyouya and Tsuyoshi Ozawa. Each has been given large-scale, midcareer retrospectives at major Tokyo venues, but none is well represented in any public collection. Takahashi’s holdings, by contrast, include several major works by each.

    Read more in The Japan Times about:

    •  how Takahashi believes that Japanese art is becoming divorced from the West
    • what he plans to do with his collection and
    • where it can be seen now

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    Posted in Acquisitions, Collectors, Individual, Japan, Japanese, Profiles, Recession | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

    Japanese photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto – 4 fascinating video interviews

    Posted by artradar on May 19, 2009


     JAPANESE PHOTOGRAPHY

     Thank heavens for youtube which has given us a whole new way to appreciate art and learn about artists.

    In these video interviews, internationally-acclaimed Japanese photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto gives us a glimpse of his warm personality. Intelligent and mild-mannered, he responds with self-deprecating humour to questions about the source of his inspiration and his innovative approach to traditional photographic techniques.

    HiroshiSugimotoStylizedScul

    What we found particularly fascinating in these videos is how Sugimoto uses one series of work to inform and serve as inspiration for later ones. In the T Magazine video, he describes how his earlier work with waxworks and still forms inspired him to photograph mannequins instead of live models and the resulting images have a sculptural quality, an interest which he explored in his ‘Joe Series’ based on Richard Serra sculptures.

    T Magazine: It’s all about Hiroshi Sugimoto – 4: 29 – Feb 2008 – fashion as sculpture – In his first fashion commission for the New York Times style magazine, Sugimoto describes why he photographs fashion on mannequins rather than live models and how he develops his ideas some of which lie latent for 30 or 40 years. “There is always something being cooked in my noodle”

    Art 21: Hiroshi Sugimoto –  1:27 mins – Feb 2008 – Photography as a tool to explore time – A  video snippet of the delightfully warm Hiroshi Sugimoto explaining how he shuns sophisticated and computer-generated techniques. He demonstrates how he manipulates light with shades in his Paris studio: difficult to control he says but still the way to make the best pictures.

    Hiroshi Sugimoto Portrait series

    Hiroshi Sugimoto Portrait series

    Hiroshi Sugimoto Part 1 – 6:50 mins – 2007 – Waxworks and the ‘Portrait’ series – As his work is being installed in Villa Manin in his first serious show in Italy, Sugimoto talks about his photographs of wax images of the Pope, Lady Diana, Holbein’s Henry VIII, Queen Elizabeth. Sugimoto explains that when he makes the images of the waxworks he aims to recreate the original photos and paintings on which the wax works are based.

    Hiroshi Sugimoto talks – 3:55 mins – Oct 2006 – at his ‘Joe Series’ exhibition at the Pulitzer in 2006 – In 2003 Sugimoto visited the Pulitzer Foundation to photograph the building designed by fellow countryman Tadao Ando but quickly turned his attention to Richard Serra’s sculpture Joe installed in the courtyard and dedicated to the late Joseph Pulitzer. He discusses the resulting photographs and  his ‘twice as infinity’ technique in which he focuses beyond infinity to make the images.

     

     

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    Posted in Hiroshi Sugimoto, Interviews, Japanese, Photography, Time, Videos | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

    Asia Art Forum brings exciting lecture series to Hong Kong

    Posted by artradar on April 4, 2009


    Asia Art Forum, an educational initiative, brings an exciting lecture series to Hong Kong May 2009 after a successful inaugural session in Shanghai in 2008.

    YEE I-Lann Sulu Stories: The Landmark 2005 Digital print 61 x 183 cm

    YEE I-Lann Sulu Stories: The Landmark 2005 Digital print 61 x 183 cm

    This time speakers with on the ground expertise will be flying into Hong Kong from around Asia providing an opportunity for a limited number of collectors, professionals and enthusiasts to learn directly about the latest developments in China, Japan and South-east Asian art. The 3 day event is scheduled May 8-10th taking place just prior to the Hong Kong art fair.

    Art Radar Asia is supporting the event and one of our community, Jehan Chu, art advisor and columnist, will be speaking about collecting. Join us there.

    title2

    Asia Art Forum Hong Kong – the announcement

    Asia Art Forum Hong Kong is proud to announce a dynamic series of lectures on Asian Contemporary Art featuring respected members of the Asian contemporary art world. Focusing on the emergence and historical development of contemporary art from China, Japan and Southeast Asia, as well as issues pertaining to the Asian art market and the collection of art, the course provides a unique opportunity for anyone seeking an in depth understanding and knowledge of these emerging areas of art history.

    Fostering direct encounters with leading members of the Asian contemporary art community, the program offers privileged access to first-hand information and invaluable insights into these developing areas of Asian art history.

    The exclusivity of the Forum enables and encourages the exchange of ideas between guest lectures and participants providing a singular opportunity for art professionals, collectors and enthusiasts with an interest in these burgeoning regions currently driving a major transformation of the international art world.

    The seminar will take place in Hong Kong over a three day period, 8-10 May. Limited places are available.

    Asia Art Forum is an educational initiative in collaboration with Arthub, produced by Pippa Dennis, with consultation from Davide Quadrio and Defne Ayas. 15% of all profits will go to Arthub, a non-profit art and cultural organization which promotes contemporary art creation in China and the rest of Asia.

    Asia Art Forum Hong Kong – the programme

    China Art Now – Contemporary Art from China

    Taking 1979 as the starting point, Philip Tinari will present a critical analysis of this dynamic and fast changing period of Chinese art history. The talk will move forward chronologically focusing on key movements, specific groups and significant exhibitions that form the backbone of the rise of contemporary Chinese art.
    Beyond the Superflat – Contemporary Art from Japan

    Japan’s art history is deeply embedded in traditional culture and yet absorbed the influences of western modernism and post modernism without losing its identity. The result is a unique artistic expression which has gone on to influcence artists in the west – and never more so than now with the advent of Manga, Anime and video games. This talk will examine the burgeoning contemporary art from this region, looking at why this previously undervalued art has recently captured the world’s attention creating fresh and exciting opportunities for Japan’s artists and art world.
    Post Tension and Tradition – Contemporary Art from Southeast Asia

    Some of the most interesting and unexpected triumphs at auction and art fairs over the last the last few years has been sparked by artists working in this region. Adeline Ooi will seek to unpick the rich and diverse art histories emerging from this area, focusing on key artists and movements.
    The Asian Art Market

    Jeremy Wingfield, Phillips de Pury’s China specialist, will be providing essential background and up to date information on the dynamic Asian Art Market. His candid approach will deliver invaluable insight into the current situation, with special focus on the fresh opportunities available to collectors, institutions and art professionals.

    For more information Asia Art Forum website or email info@asiaartforum.com

    Subscribe to Art Radar Asia for important event news

    Posted in China, Chinese, Courses, Events, Hong Kong, Japanese, Southeast Asian | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »