Yokohama Triennale 2011: Photo Report

Arguably the biggest art event of the year kicks off in the Tokyo neighbour.

poster for Yokohama Triennale 2011

Yokohama Triennale 2011

at Yokohama Museum Of Art
in the Yokohama, Kanagawa area
This event has ended - (2011-08-06 - 2011-11-06)

poster for Yokohama Triennale 2011

Yokohama Triennale 2011

at BankArt Studio NYK
in the Yokohama, Kanagawa area
This event has ended - (2011-08-06 - 2011-11-06)

In Photo Reports by William Andrews 2011-08-06

The theme of the Yokohama Triennale 2011 is 'Our Magic House: How Much of the World Can We Know?'
Here is the main venue, the Yokohama Museum of Art, with Ugo Rondinone's 'moonrise' twelve monster sculptures guarding the front.

Aiming to introduce visitors to 'encounters' and unexpected 'meetings', reoccurring motifs are dreams, illusions, mysteries and the primitive.
The 'Our Magic Hour' sign is also by Rondinone.

Yin Xiuzhen's 'One Sentence' (2011) greets visitors as they come in: rolls of fabrics round and round a winding maze.

Another labyrinth. One of the star attractions of the Triennale: Yoko Ono's 'Telephone in Maze' (2011)
Lots of amused gnashing of teeth and  bumping of heads in order to navigate the glass walls and reach the phone inside, and maybe pick up and speak to the iconic artist herself. Here, a TV presenter prepares to embark on her adventure in the warren for the cameras.

The piece was slightly soured by the formality of press needing to sign a special permission slip just to photograph it. No other exhibit was given such treatment, lending a sort of heightened sacredness to the way in which we were meant to regard the Ono work.Tobias Rehberger's 'Anderer' (2002):
59 light bulbs hang from the ceiling, connected to a remote child's room by the internet.
When the light in the child's room switches off, they turn on in the Museum. Switched back on over there, they will turn off here.

James Lee Byars, 'The Diamond Floor' (1995), installed in darkness.

Ataru Sato puts the final touches to 'Dear everyone'.

Atsushi Saga's minimalist 'Still White — Corridor' (2011) frankly baffled visitors. The mirror effect is due to the artist's craftsman-like, constant polishing of the painted surface.

Mike Kelly's 'Kandor City' series of light models was more beguiling.

Massimo Bartolini's 'Organi' (2008) is likely the largest work, a scaffolding sound installation that dominates the space. The church organ music comes out of the pipes, forming an ambiguous atmosphere of both prosaic construction and high religion.

The music from the Bartolini lends itself well to the same exhibition room's Damian Hirst butterfly works that resemble church stained glass windows.
A feature of the curation at the Triennale is this pairing of originally unconnected works in a single installation.

Another duo. In this case it is Ryan Gander's crystals, 'A sheet of paper on which I was about to draw, as it slipped from my table and fell to the floor' (2008), with 'O inquilino / The Tenant' (2010), a video work by Rivane Neuenschwander, in the background.

Hiroshi Sugimoto's 'Five Elements' (2011) is in a little cubbyhole, sandwiched rather serenely between two other small spaces.

Takahiro Iwasaki encourages you to look anew at parts of the venue through these telescopes set up around the second floor ('Out of Disorder [Media Tower]' 2011).

Taking a shuttle bus over to the second main venue, BankART Studio NYK, the first floor contained a large zoological surprise: an untitled rhino from Dewar & Gicquel.

Henrik Håkansson's 'A Tree With Roots' appeared on both the second and third floors.

More trees from Henrik Håkansson can be glimpsed in the depths of the top floor.

And inside you can see why the work is called 'Fallen Forest'.

Tokyo art socialite Johnnie Walker spotted at the preview.

William Andrews

William Andrews. William Andrews came to Japan in 2004. He first lived in Osaka, where he was a translator for Kansai Art Beat. Arriving in Tokyo in 2008, he now works as an writer, editor and translator. He writes a blog about Japanese radicalism and counterculture ( and one about Tokyo contemporary theatre ( He is the author of Dissenting Japan: A History of Japanese Radicalism and Counterculture, from 1945 to Fukushima. » See other writings


About TABlog

TABlog's writers deliver regular reviews, features and interviews to stimulate discussion about all sides of Tokyo's creative scene.

The views expressed on TABlog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of their employers, or Tokyo Art Beat, or the Gadago NPO.

All content on this site is © their respective owner(s).
Tokyo Art Beat (2004 - 2021) - About - Contact - Privacy - Terms of Use