Special Lecture | 6-9 PM | Thursday 3 Dec 2015
Art in the Age of the Global Environment
6-9 PM | Thurs 3 Dec 2015 | Norwich Cathedral Hostry
Lecture begins at 6.30pm
Reception at 8pm
in discussion with Jonathan Watkins (IKON Gallery Birmingham)
Q&A Chaired by Adrian Favell (Sainsbury Institute and University of Leeds)
About the Lecture | 3 December
Kitagawa Fram, the visionary art producer and curator at the heart of this uniquely creative social movement, will outline his socially engaged and environmentally conscious vision of contemporary art that has brought hundreds of Japanese and international artists to the mountains of Niigata and the islands of the Seto Inland Sea.
He will be joined in discussion by the curator, Jonathan Watkins, director of Birmingham’s IKON Gallery, who has organised many pioneering shows of Japanese contemporary art in the UK.
This lecture is free to attend. Please email the Institute to book your place as seat numbers are limited.
The lecture is part of the international conference held the following day on Friday 4 December.
About the Speakers
Fram Kitagawa is Chairman of Art Front Gallery, Tokyo, and General Director of the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale and Setouchi Triennale. The two triennials are among the largest contemporary art events in the world—attracting around half a million visitors to Echigo-Tsumari and around a million to Setouchi, to see and participate in a range of artworks and events in rural contexts.
A translation of his writing, Art Place Japan: The Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale and the Vision to Reconnect Art and Nature is published by Princeton Architectural Press in November 2015 and will be available at the event.
Jonathan Watkins is Director of Ikon Gallery, Birmingham since 1999. He was previously Curator of the Serpentine Gallery (1995-1997) and Director of Chisenhale Gallery (1990-1995). His major exhbitions include the Biennale of Sydney (1998), Facts of Life: Contemporary Japanese Art (Hayward Gallery, London 2001), Shanghai Biennale (2006), and the Guangzhou Triennial (2012).
He has written extensively on contemporary art including, among Japanese artists, essays on Tadashi Kawamata and a Phaidon monograph on On Kawara.
About the Conference | 4 December
Far beyond the global conception of hyper-modern Tokyo and the consumer wonderland of “Cool Japan”, the declining local regions of Japan have, in the past two decades, seen a flowering of startlingly ambitious contemporary art festivals that offer a response to the many crises the country faces today. Artistic interventions, involving thousands of young volunteers engaging with ageing and often desperately isolated populations, have brought contemporary art installations, community projects and the latest curatorial trends to the most unlikely places: to disappearing villages surrounded by untended rice fields, former schools and factories in crumbling small towns, and abandoned houses in forests, up mountains, and on remote islands.
The day long conference will examine the relation of dramatic social change in Japan to the social promise of these art movements – in the light of de-population and rural/urban divides, political disengagement and, most recently, terrible natural disasters. We welcome two other leading curators from Japan, Mizuki Takahashi of Art Tower Mito and Mizuki Endo of HAPS, Kyoto, as well as a range of distinguished researchers, curators and artists from the UK and Japan.
Themes discussed will include:
• How much does “post-growth” Japan provide a global model for understanding the trajectory and crises of other advanced industrial societies?
• Can art play a role in social care and welfare provision in ageing societies, or is this a symptom of governmental neglect of remote and peripheral locations?
• How has Japan changed since the massive disasters of March 2011, and what is to be learned from new kinds of community building taking place around the country?
• What are the parallels to be drawn between the context of rural Japan and the challenges of making the arts meaningful in an agricultural region such as East Anglia?
Confirmed speakers include: Mizuki Takahashi, Mizuki Endo, Peter Matanle, Jenny White, Keith Whittle, Gen Adachi, Kaori Homma, Eiko Honda, Hiroki Yamamoto
The conference is free to attend and booking is not required.
Conference programme and information available via link below
The conference and lecture is organised by Adrian Favell, Professorial Academic Associate, Sainsbury Institute
Organised by the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures in association with the Japan Foundation.
Additional support from the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation