Solo Exhibition “1/2 Century later.” in Shiseido Gallery
Agricultural Revolution 3.0
Small circulation/ecosystem, a small revolution
Space changing organically
A research project on agriculture, biotechnology and a new garden city.
This was held in multiple forms; research, installation and conversation.
Columbia University and University of Cambridge cooperated in the research and farmers, Wired, OMA NY, and more intellectual participated in the conference.
In the center of Shonai, Yamagata prefecture, with a long history of agriculture and a landscape of satoyama, we established a place growing organically.
Through interview to domestic and overseas laboratories and researchers and companies developing new materials, we designed the definition. Based on thorough research and collected actual materials, we drew a design.
Not in the macroscopic/comprehensive/destructive city model but in a sequence of small cycles at a low perspective, we try a new model of revolution.
Space changing organically
The transforming space
We established a space organically changing correspondingly to research.
In this installation, furniture, clothe, lamp, food, materials which grow during session, and open sourced small agricultural machine were showcased as if it is from theatre or cinema. This work gave the visitors physical experience to travel around the thoughts.
We held conference at the transformed installation space. Local farmers and various guests from Spiber Inc. which locates in Tsuruoka City and develops recombinant protein materials, OMA NY, Wired, 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, and more discussed the possibilities of agricultural cities and the future direction in front of the local people.
Q. Where was it held?
A. It was held in Tsuruoka city, Yamagata prefecture in Tohoku (northeast) area in Japan. Tsuruoka art forum that was used as a venue is Kunst Halle used mainly to live in.
Q. Why is it “3.0”? / Can I see the research and interview?
A. You can see the details of the concept and text from here, and a part of the interview here.
Q. To what extent are you involved?
A. We conducted research, defined the conference, constructed the project (what to do in the conference) and decided details.
Q. What is described in the design drawings in the picture?
A. In this exhibition, the blueprint of the practices in the project was shown. In these drawings, the sceneries which are not quite different from now. In “Model Room”, a set of four drawings, a calm lifestyle and a room surrounded by clothes and furniture made from new materials were drawn with delicate lines. Most of the furniture and clothes drawn here are made from the new materials we actually found through our research. In the drawings, we can also see olives which were important as an oil crop from ancient times, rubber trees regarded as a new material for Europeans after processing, as well as motifs on agricultural myths.
These show a peaceful future different from technology dystopia. The "model" minutely carved on a copper plate rises faintly behind the reflection of copper.
From a re-excavation place to a constructive space
In our exhibition “1/2 Century later”, we mainly placed two works; “Beyond good and evil, make way toward the wasteland.”, a sculpture work which expresses a destructed/weathered room in the last scene of the movie “2001: A Space Odyssey” (Stanley Kubrick, 1968), and “White Painting”, a pure white two-dimensional work, or a minimum architecture, which was impressed with the kisses of 100 people.
The space for the exhibition was like a cube and the longest distance was on the diagonal. Thus we placed these two pieces of work on this vector relatively and made a classical arrangement that centering the destructed sculpture and putting the painting in the back/surrounding. Since the objects in the center themselves are scattering, they cause parallax against the painting in the back.
Audiences first go through the ruined room and then they encounter White Painting in the space behind. The movie “2001: A Space Odyssey” was released in 1968 and this exhibition was held in the end of 2017. The exhibition title “1/2 Century later” means both “half a century from then” and “half a century from now on”.
Outline (Excerpted from exhibition information)
THE EUGENE Studio 1/2 Century later.
Duration: November 21 (Tue) to December 24 (Sun), 2016
The Shiseido Gallery is pleased to announce the exhibition “THE EUGENE Studio — 1/2 Century Later,” which will run from November 21 (Tue) through December 24 (Sun). THE EUGENE Studio is a completely new artist team focusing on contemporary art that pushes the conventional boundaries outward toward the creation of the next society. Along with design groups like teamLab and others, THE EUGENE Studio’s Japanese artist team has been garnering worldwide attention, its activities arguably establishing a new 21st-century image of what it is to be an artist.*1
For this exhibition, THE EUGENE Studio presents an installation of previously unseen works based around the motif of “1968,”*2 and the exhibition title “1/2 Century Later” refers to “the half century since then” (as well as “the half century from now”). THE EUGENE Studio has been exploring fresh new images of the future that “we of today” can create by connecting with today’s reality and contrasting such images with our previous images of the future. This exhibition space features a large glass-sheet installation piece on the motif “the legacy of ‘future images’ drawn by the stories of the past,” and around this are arranged works that reflect the next future.
The futures these artists have contributed include: the 2D work “Agricultural Revolution 3.0,” which depicts a tranquil life in which biotechnology and agriculture have merged; portions of a script and sketch board for a story about an artificial intelligence agency; and “White Painting,” a work central to this exhibition and created through a collective method that adopts the structures characteristic of the social media era to convey small hopes for the new globalization. The legacy of “future images” from the past half-century come face-to-face in the gallery with the start of the new yet contiguous future in which we are living now. Visitors may get to experience the feeling of a new society as this refined worldview resonates the spectacle of the exhibition space. This is to perceive the values of the new future as illuminated by art along with the progress of 21st-century science and technology, and it is also the experience of expressing this in words.
In recent years, THE EUGENE Studio has drawn on research and conferences featuring participants from Cambridge University, the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, OMA NY, and others, and these feature in the biotechnology and agricultural themes in “Agricultural Revolution 3.0.” It has also collaborated with science fiction writer Ken Liu (winner of three of the most prestigious American science fiction awards), and it has been expanding its international presence to include full involvement in film production.
Even as it takes an active look back on the history of art itself, art history and the circumstances of the past, THE EUGENE Studio also continues to renew the map of that “contiguous future,” in which the past and the present alike find connection, by purposefully involving itself in today’s real society through a multifaceted sphere of activity, including participation in cutting-edge R&D in fields like artificial intelligence, urbanization, and biotechnology. It can be said that these are the kinds of activities which, even while embracing the conceptual creativity, contextuality and forms of pure contemporary art, will be truly instrumental in creating the next actualities in society.
Shiseido takes as its mission to inspire a life of beauty and culture, and through the activities of the Shiseido Gallery we connect the new values of society to inspire our lifestyle and culture by sharing images of the future as reflected in the new art of each era. We hope this exhibition will stimulate as many people as possible to begin updating their own maps of the future.
*1 Daisuke Miyatsu’s The Age of Art x Technology, published this year by Kobunsha Shinsho, introduces THE EUGENE Studio along with teamLab, Takram, and Rhizomatiks as four Japanese artists currently garnering international acclaim.
*2 1968, the year of Stanley Kubrick’s film 2001: A Space Odyssey, and Philip K. Dick’s science fiction novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (the basis for the movie Blade Runner), was the year which saw the definition of many of the emblematic future images that remain with us today, extrapolated from developments in science and technology at the time.
[ Exhibition ]
1/2 Century later.
November 21 – December 24, 2017 Shiseido Gallery
Organized by SHISEIDO Co.,Ltd.
Planned by Shiseido Corporate Culture Department
Exhibition Cooperation: THE EUGENE Studio Co., Ltd.
Sponsored by GOLDWIN INC., NEUTRALWORKS.
Cooperation: Object of Null, Inc.,Scovil Galen Ghosh Literary Agency., Ryosuke Uehara (Graphic design)
Curated by Kenichiro Ito
[ Related Event ]
Kei Wakabayashi (Editor-in-Chief, WIRED Japanese edition)
Teiya Iwabuchi (Bijutsu Techo Editor-in-Chief)
Eugene Kangawa (THE EUGENE Studio)
Date: November 9, 2017 14:00-16:00
Venue: Hanatsubaki Hall