Hiroko Okada “Double Future”
[Image: Hiroko Okada “Engaged Body: Tiara – Cerebral Blood Vessel” (2019) gold leaf on nylon (3D print from scanned data of the artist's own internal organ) Photography: Kenichiro Oshima Courtesy of Tokyo Photographic Art Museum]
This event has ended.
The artworks on display for this exhibition feature Hiroko Okada’s latest series “Engaged Body” and “The Delivery by Male Project” made in 2002 (revised for 2019).
Engaged Body” was presented at Yebisu International Festival for Art & Alternative Visions in February of this year, receiving very favorable reviews. Since then, the work has been selected by Ars Electronica Center in Linz, Austria for a one-year exhibition. For this show, original drawings and new two-dimensional works are revitalized for an installation. It is set in a fictional future in which Japan’s regenerative medicine continues to advance to the point where people are able to use cellular differentiation to create all types of organs from a single cell line and then donate them to others. A culture arises where, as commemoration of the relationship between donor and recipient, a part of the regenerated organ is scanned, turned into jewelry and sent as a gift. While the donor and recipient aren’t able to know each other’s names, they instead send and receive the “Engaged Body Jewelry” as proof of their pledge in establishing a physical relation.
The video work “The Delivery by Male Project” portrays a fictional near future where “men can conceive and give birth.” It follows a pregnant man identified as “S.K.” who feels burdened in having meaningful conversations with others, who doesn’t want a girlfriend, and who also doesn’t want to be married, but eagerly wishes that he had his own child. The work reflects all things that relate to pregnancy and childbirth for Japanese women – a general lack of understanding towards mothers’ ways of life in society, the attendant joys and stresses of raising children, and the problem of a declining birthrate – things that Okada noticed through her own experience of pregnancy and delivery.
While these works both depict fictional futures, they also simultaneously act as mirrors reflecting our present reality. Viewing them, one can glean the way in which advanced medical treatments have changed over the last seventeen years.
from July 10, 2019 to August 10, 2019
Opening Reception on 2019-07-10 from 18:00 to 20:00