"To Wander a Garden" Exhibition

The Vangi Sculpture Garden Museum

poster for "To Wander a Garden" Exhibition

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The Vangi Sculpture Garden Museum (opened April 28, 2002) celebrates its 10th anniversary. Commemorating the museum’s first decade and its distinctive character, this exhibition on the theme of “the garden” will feature 19 Japanese contemporary artists who are extending the horizons of the present.

The garden has historically been a place close to the lives of the Japanese, where one spent time in contemplation and enjoyed the passing of the seasons. Traditional garden design, which employed the language of symbol and metaphor to describe the placement of rocks and trees, was the very embodiment of a high spiritual culture of philosophy and the appreciation of nature that was nurtured in gardens. Today, contemporary expression, with a breadth that extends beyond the frames of genre, often attempts to connect to and reconstruct the flow of time, action, and perception within ourselves. The garden—a microcosm within the vast ecosystem, on the border between nature and artifice, between landscape and architecture—opens out before us as a place that transcends our everyday lives while being a part of those lives. What do those of us who live in today’s Japan see, what do we feel, what do we do in “the garden”?

Just as actual gardens do, this exhibition exploring the possibilities of the places we call gardens will provide a reflecting mirror that will illuminate us ourselves.

[Image: Rinko Kawauchi, "Untitled (from the Cui Cui series)" (2008)]

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