MAIN GALLERIES -- March 26 - April 30, 2011
A big arigato to everyone who came out for the opening of Gateway: Japan and for helping raise $6,780 dollars for the Japanese Red Cross! A website is currently being set up to sell the rest of the artist's donations for Japanese Red Cross relief fund and will be available shortly - stay tuned to the TAM website …
Gateway Japan curated by Yuko Wakaume. Ei Kibukawa and Max Presneill
March 26 - April 30
The Torrance Art Museum presents Gateway Japan, curated by Yuko Wakaume and Max Presneill – the first in a series of international exhibitions, focusing on the link between artists from other countries and those here in Los Angeles with a similar cultural background.
Introduction by Max Presneill, 2011
Part of the duties an art museum is tasked with are educational. Infact that is the primary task. With any small regional art museum it can be difficult to try to build a program that allows the museum to stretch beyond easy parameters of regionalism to provide an exceptionally rich program of exhibitions that draw attention to world class renowned artists of our day and exhibitions of emerging talents who will, one day, be that too.
It should also be the curators hope that the programming will reflect upon culture at large and beyond city, state and even country to explore other versions of visual culture, other ideas and methodologies. Maybe more so in America than other countries as most of our families originated elsewhere.
Gateway Japan offers our visitors a chance to take a look at some Japanese artists in a contextual setting alongside some Japanese-American artists to investigate the similarities and differences that distance and immersion in a different culture may bring to each. This is perhaps akin to tracking twins separated by birth to see what lies in the debate of nuture vs nature for them as artists - a particularly difficult task when the art world is so cosmopolitar and entwined. Global art fairs, the Internet and other aspects of
art in the 21st Century have helped create a swirling cauldron of ideas and images available to all and influencing artists across the world.
Lost in translation?
What can we surmise from this show and what themes emerge? Are there clear diverging approaches or content nuances that cleave them apart by nation? Or do we see the overcoming of difference in aid of the same human needs to explain the world via art? Are there in fact any real and deep divisions at all and is that true for all artists involved in contemporary art the world over, making nonsense of limiting a show to a racial identity, as we suspect.....? So am I claiming this show as nonsense then? No, of course not. But one must be aware of the potential for failure while still attempting to explore an issue. It is as much the asking of the question as the answer received, is it not? But like many things one must test by experiment.
VideoRow - Grant Stevens, Ian Haig and Jess MacNeil – Australian video works