2022 Exhibition [Autumn / Winter]Hello, How Can We Do a Nara Yoshitomo Show? Documents on Nara Yoshitomo’s Hirosaki Exhibitions 2002-2006

2022.9.17(SAT) ― 2023.3.21(TUE)
  • Installation view Photo: Masayuki Hasegawa Artwork: ©︎Yoshitomo Nara

    Installation view Photo: Masayuki Hasegawa Artwork: ©︎Yoshitomo Nara

  • Installation view Photo: Masayuki Hasegawa

    Installation view Photo: Masayuki Hasegawa

  • Installation view "YOSHITOMO NARA + graf A to Z" , 2006  Photo:Masako Nagano Artwork: ©︎Yoshitomo Nara

    Installation view "YOSHITOMO NARA + graf A to Z" , 2006
    Photo:Masako Nagano Artwork: ©︎Yoshitomo Nara

  • "I DON’T MIND, IF YOU FORGET ME." , 2002  Photo:Masako Nagano Artwork: ©︎Yoshitomo Nara

    "I DON’T MIND, IF YOU FORGET ME." , 2002
    Photo:Masako Nagano Artwork: ©︎Yoshitomo Nara

  • "From the Depth of My Drawer." , 2005  Photo:Masako Nagano Artwork: ©︎Yoshitomo Nara

    "From the Depth of My Drawer." , 2005
    Photo:Masako Nagano Artwork: ©︎Yoshitomo Nara

  • "YOSHITOMO NARA + graf A to Z" , 2006  Photo:Hako Hosokawa

    "YOSHITOMO NARA + graf A to Z" , 2006
    Photo:Hako Hosokawa

  • "YOSHITOMO NARA + graf A to Z" , 2006  Photo: Hako Hosokawa

    "YOSHITOMO NARA + graf A to Z" , 2006
    Photo: Hako Hosokawa

Hirosaki Museum of Contemporary Art presents “Hello, How Can We Do a Nara Yoshitomo Show? Documents on Nara Yoshitomo’s Hirosaki Exhibitions” featuring a huge range of archival materials, photographs and video tracking the journey of three exhibitions staged by contemporary artist and Hirosaki native Nara Yoshitomo (b. 1959) at the Brick Warehouse before its conversion to an art museum.

Moving to Germany in 1988, Nara built a successful overseas career before returning to Japan in 2000, where his first fully-fledged solo exhibition in his homeland, “I DON’T MIND, IF YOU FORGET ME.” began touring the following year, reaching the Brick Warehouse in 2002. This led to two more exhibitions at the same venue: “From the Depth of My Drawer” (2005) and “YOSHITOMO NARA + graf A to Z” (2006).

The title “Hello, How Can We Do a Nara Yoshitomo Show?” is from an inquiry made to Nara’s gallery by then Yoshii Brick Brewhouse owner Yoshii Chiyoko (president of the Yoshii Brewing Co., Ltd.), who very much taken with the artist’s work, was eager to show some of it at her warehouse. This initial phone call led to Yoshii and Nara becoming acquainted, and a Nara Yoshitomo exhibition at the Brick Warehouse was born.

This year, two decades after Hirosaki’s first Nara Yoshitomo exhibition, we once again shine a light on these three shows so significant in terms of the relationship between the Brick Warehouse, and the local Hirosaki community. “Hello, How Can We Do a Nara Yoshitomo Show?” is composed of print resources and merchandise from the time, documentary video, and photos taken during exhibition setup, and the exhibitions, by photographers Nagano Masako and Hosokawa Hako. A selection of Nara’s works previously shown are also on display. The idea is to take the example of the Nara Yoshitomo shows in Hirosaki, and use it to craft a setting for the contemplation of local art projects and art museums, and the people involved in them.

Artists

  • NAGANO Masako
    Photo: asaco suzuki

    NAGANO Masako

    Born 1971, and currently based, in Saitama prefecture. Graduated from Aoyama Gakuin Women’s Junior College. Mainly shoots portraits for magazines, advertising, websites, and books. Published This is a time of… yoshitomo nara+graf (Seigensha) in 2004.

  • HOSOKAWA Hako
    Photo: Hiroyo Katsube

    HOSOKAWA Hako

    Born 1974 in Fukui prefecture; based in Tokyo. BFA in photography from Nihon University College of Art. Launched her career as photographer in 2004, shooting portraits, still lifes and a wide range of other images for magazines, advertising, movie stills, exhibition catalogues and various other media.

  • NARA Yoshitomo
    Photo: RYOICHI KAWAJIRI
    Artwork: ©︎Yoshitomo Nara

    NARA Yoshitomo

    Born 1959 in Aomori prefecture. In 1987, completed master’s degree program at Aichi University of the Arts. Moved to Germany in 1988 and enrolled at Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. After residing in Cologne, repatriated to Japan in 2000. Has exhibited in various places in Europe, the United States, Japan, and Asia since the late 1990s. Known for powerful portraits with eyes that gaze back at the viewer; drawing works produced daily; three-dimensional works in wood, FRP, ceramic, and bronze; and installations of little houses.

Exhibition Highlights

1. Reflects vividly on the three exhibitions from multiple angles, primarily through printed material, merchandise, and video

The show includes footage of interviews with people involved in the exhibitions at the time, plus printed material, merchandise and more gathered with the help of local residents. As well as setting out the paths taken by the three exhibitions from preparation to completion, “Hello, How Can We Do a Nara Yoshitomo Show?” examines elements of the exhibitions from different perspectives, such as how Brick Warehouse owner Yoshii Chiyoko and Nara became acquainted, and the progressive community building that kicked off with the presence of volunteers running the exhibitions.

2. Photo displays conveying the energy that powered the exhibitions

Photos by Nagano Masako and Hosokawa Hako show preparations being made for Nara Yoshitomo’s Hirosaki exhibitions, people who helped to make the exhibitions happen, and the cityscape at the time. These groups of photos capturing the same subjects from the different perspectives of Nagano and Hosokawa not only serve as detailed records of the building at the time, and the exhibits, but also convey a strong sense of the passion of people pulling together with the single, shared goal of completing an exhibition, and the sheer energy flowing through the Brick Warehouse in that moment. Designer Yamamoto Makoto, who provided graphics for the previous Hirosaki exhibitions, was also involved in designing the layout for this one.

3. Nara Yoshitomo works from the previous exhibitions

In addition to materials from the three previous exhibitions, “Hello, How Can We Do a Nara Yoshitomo Show?” features a selection of Nara’s works shown at these, including paintings, drawings and sculptures, all presented in a space now converted into an art museum, yet suffused with memories of its former life as the Brick Warehouse. Also on display are favorite books and records belonging to the young Nara when he was living in Hirosaki.

4. Participatory projects running in tandem with the exhibition

The Hirosaki Exchange #05 program includes the “Moshimoshi engekibu” [Hello drama club] theater project offering new meditations on the Hirosaki exhibitions by tracing memories of earlier Nara Yoshitomo shows to write a play, plus other opportunities for local participation such as the “Chiisana okori” [Little happenings] research project exploring the changes the three Nara exhibitions brought to Hirosaki and its inhabitants, and related exhibits. Shining a spotlight on the community creativity unleashed by the three Nara Yoshitomo exhibitions, Hirosaki Exchange #05 contemplates the future of the Brick Warehouse, reborn as a museum largely thanks to these same exhibitions.

Booklet

Booklet will be available during the exhibition.

Outline

  • Date: 2022.9.17(SAT) ―2023.3.21 (TUE)
    Closed:Tuesdays (except on Mar. 21, 2023) and from Dec. 26, 2021 to Jan. 1, 2022.
    Opening hours: 9:00-17:00 (Last admission 30 minutes before closing)
  • Organizer: Hirosaki Museum of Contemporary Art
    Special sponsor: Starts Corporation Inc.
    Sponsor: OBAYASHI CORPORATION
    Cooperated by NARA Yoshitomo, NPO harappa
    Under the patronage of The To-o Nippo Press, THE DAILY TOHOKU SHIMBUN, THE MUTSU SHIMPO Press, Aomori Broadcasting Corporation, Aomori Television Broadcasting Co., Ltd., Asahi Broadcasting Aomori Co., Ltd., Aomori Fm Broadcasting, FM APPLE WAVE, Hirosaki City Board of Education
  • Admission (tax included):
    Adults 1,300yen (1,200yen)
    University & College Students 1,000yen (900yen)
    *() Price for a group over 20 people
    *Free of charge for high school students and under; inter­national students in Hirosaki city; citizens of Hirosaki over 65; the disabled and one accompanying attendant

    Parking
    Please note that parking is not available at the museum.
    Please use public transportation or paid parking near the museum.

    Discounted Parking for Museum Visitors
    A parking discount of ¥100 per visitor is available for up to two visitors (¥200).
    for details

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