poster for Interpretations, Tokyo
[Image: Gerard de Lairesse, “A dispute between Achilles and Agamemnon” oil on canvas, 300 x 214 cm]

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Interpretations, Tokyo is a limited three-day exhibition featuring paintings by Gerard de Lairesse (1640-1711), an artist who was contemporaneous with Rembrandt, and the works of six Tokyo-based artists. In this show, two large paintings by de Lairesse comprising vivid and dynamic depictions of Greek mythological themes are brought together with the works created by the Japanese artists in many styles to engage in a dialog that transcends the boundaries of time, country, and medium.

The inception of this exhibition dates back ten years ago when Dries Van Noten, a fashion designer also known for his deep knowledge of art, sought to instigate a fusion of Japanese and European cultures by commissioning cutting-edge artists from Japan to create works based on an interpretation of two 17th century paintings in his collection. The artists that he chose were the painter Yuumi Domoto and photographer Mika Ninagawa. Looking back, Ninagawa spoke of Van Noten’s stipulation that the produced art be the same size as de Lairesse’s paintings and monochromatic and how that stipulation led to the opening of a new frontier for her- the making of “monochromatic flowers.”

Ten years later, with the show set to appear at the Hara Museum, three more artists were asked to create work that would open up new dialogs with de Lairesse’s work: Masaho Anotani, Naho Ishii and Ataru Sato. As he did ten years ago, Dries Van Noten made the final selection of artists himself. Appearing in the exhibition are the two paintings by Lairesse that were the basis for Drie’s idea, the four initial works made ten years ago, and new works made specifically for the present show.

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Schedule

from March 29, 2019 to March 31, 2019

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