Posted:Sep 5, 2014

10 Things in Tokyo: July Round-Up

A short list of events and exhibitions across Tokyo and beyond in July.

RongRong & inri, 'Tsumari TS2-5' (2012) Silver gelatin print
RongRong & inri, 'Tsumari TS2-5' (2012) Silver gelatin print
Courtesy Mizuma Gallery

Tsumari Story,” an exhibition of beautiful photographs from remote Japan by RongRong & inri, is in its last days at Mizuma Gallery. The husband and wife artist unit (and their children) spent some time in Tsumari, in close proximity to the isolated northern landscape of Yasunari Kawabata’s Snow Country, and developed a body of images that eloquently capture love, intimacy, and the wholesomeness of getting back to nature. Until July 12.

See works by Tsuyoshi Ozawa and other international artists who have participated this year in the Tokyo Metropolitan Government-funded artist residency programs. “Tokyo Story 2014 Part 2” will be on display at Tokyo Wonder Site Shibuya until July 21.

Tang Dixin is a leader from the newest generation of young Chinese artists. Reed (2009) is a performance in which the artist and a Japanese person–both unable to speak the other’s language–attempt to communicate on an island near Shanghai. See this and other works at Ota Fine Arts until August 9.

Out at the Hara Museum Arc in Gunma prefecture, there are two surely crowd-pleasing exhibitions happening over the summer. At the Kankai Pavillion, “Pictures That Tell a Story” is just that: a collection of traditional Japanese works on paper that have a strong narrative content. Part 1 runs until August 20, and then Part 2 is until October 5. Meanwhile, “Hiroshi Fuji and the Unexplored Land of Toysaurus” is an impressive installation made from recycled plastic toys. Until October 5.

Back in Tokyo, Photographer’s Gallery will have images by the renowned Keizo Kitajima with the ambitious description of capturing our “imbalance between the centre and the periphery… and our myopic vision”. His exhibition will run from July 11 until August 10.

In what could seem like an unlikely pairing, Lee Ufan‘s installation works will be on display at Takashi Murakami’s Kaikai Kiki Gallery. Perhaps this isn’t the most unpredictable move for Lee right now–his sculptures are also spread across the grounds of Chateau de Versailles in France. The Kaikai Kiki show begins on July 25 and continues until August 21.

Nao Tsuda is a Japanese photographer who traveled to Bhutan in 2010 to record scenes and images of faith in this well-preserved Buddhist kingdom. Pictures of temples and statues are set against their harsh Himalayan backdrop. Until July 26.

The Container, that small shipping container inside a Naka-Meguro hair salon, is showing an installation exhibition by graphic designer Pedro Inoue called “Love Me, Bomb Me” and it uses an immense collection of pop culture images to make a modern day mandala, or Buddhist map, to portray our current world. Until August 17.

Emily Wakeling

Emily Wakeling

Emily Wakeling is a writer and curator who used to be based in Tokyo. Hailing from Brisbane, Australia, Emily wrote a Masters thesis on images of girls in contemporary Japanese art. She also curated some local sound art events. Her research interests cover Asian and Australian contemporary art, young women artists, globalisation and art, and new media.