Urgent Talk 043: TSUCHI: Earthy Materials in Contemporary Japanese Art
Japanese-English simultaneous interpretation available
The “Urgent Talks” provide a platform for discussion around artists, curators, critics, activists and others across the globe engaged in significant, innovative work that demands urgent attention.
Our guest for “Urgent Talk 043” is Bert Winther-Tamaki, art historian and professor of art history at the University of California, Irvine, who will speak about his book TSUCHI: Earthy Materials in Contemporary Japanese Art (University of Minnesota Press, 2022).
Winther-Tamaki’s book takes an ecocritical and environment historical look at tsuchi (earth) as a material that has played myriad roles in Japanese art, in a reappraisal of Japanese contemporary art. It examines the wealth of earth-based expression produced amid a series of environmental crises, from natural disasters to industrial pollution and radioactive contamination that have beset the country since 1955, and the connections between such works and the environmental history behind them. TSUCHI: Earthy Materials in Contemporary Japanese Art compares over 70 works of art, including photographs, ceramic pieces, and installations, and makes observations on their aesthetic properties and cultural significance.
This edition of Urgent Talk will look at this book - a fascinating read also from an ecological perspective - and discuss contemporary art’s involvement in the environment to date, and how that involvement might possibly develop in the future.
- Date & Time
- 19:00-20:30, Tuesday, November 1, 2022 (Doors Open: 18:30)
* Mori Art Museum will be closed at 17:00.
* Current exhibition cannot be viewed.
- Bert Winther-Tamaki (Professor in the Art History Department and Visual Studies Ph.D. Program at the University of California, Irvine)
- Martin Germann (Adjunct Curator, Mori Art Museum), Tokuyama Hirokazu (Associate Curator, Mori Art Museum)
Professor in the Art History Department and Visual Studies Ph.D. Program at the University of California, Irvine. His research focuses on Japanese modern and contemporary art, with an emphasis on materiality and transnationality. Among his published books are Maximum Embodiment: Yōga, the ‘Western Painting’ of Japan, 1912-1955 (University of Hawaii Press, 2012), Art in the Encounter of Nations: Japanese and American Artists in the Early Postwar Years (University of Hawaii Press, 2001), and two monographs concerning 20th-century Japanese art. As a visiting researcher at the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, the University of Tokyo, he is currently working on a new book provisionally titled Flames and Incinerations in Contemporary Japanese Visual Culture.
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