Director’s Desk: Dispatches From Japan

Teshima Museum

Here, a long-looking interlude in Teshima Art Museum collaboration between architect Ryue Nishizawa and artist Rei Naito.

Hard to believe it’s been over a month since we took a Phillips trip to Japan as part of our travel program. Over the course of a week and a half, we traveled to Tokyo, Kyoto, Kurashiki, Naoshima, and Takamatsu. Here are a few snapshots of the people, places, and studios we visited.

Benesse Museum Naoshima

Wonderful view from the Benesse House Museum designed by Tadao Ando on the island of Naoshima.

Dorothy and Gormley on Naoshima

In the elegant Benesse House Hotel. Makes me think back to the great Antony Gormley installation here at the Phillips in 2012.

2015TPCinJapan_TUA Studio Visit with artist James Jack1

Enjoying a studio visit with artist and professor James Jack at the Tokyo University of the Arts (Geidai). The pigments of each of these squares is composed with one dirt sample collected from various sites at which the artist has lived.

Kiyomizu Temple Kyoto_side by side

Our trip also embraced the traditional arts if Japan. We visited the Kiyomizu-dera temple in Kyoto where the serene garden made me think of the Impressionists’ deep love of all things Japonisme.

Meiji Shrine Tokyo

We learned a lot from the Shinto priest who accompanied us on our visit to the Meiji Shrine in Tokyo.

2015TPCinJapan_DK and Mr.Ohara outside Ohara  Museum in Kurashiki

Meeting Mr.Ohara outside the Ohara Museum of Art in Kurashiki.

Sugimoto

I adored this gorgeous work by Hiroshi Sugimoto that the artist showed our group. It is an interpretation of a historically important screen, a national treasure.

Director’s Desk: Dispatch From Seoul

Olafur Eliasson Seoul

Olafur Eliasson installation at Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art in Seoul. Magnificent transformation of a staircase with the magic of light and mirrors causing poetic and mind bending reflections. Meanwhile, across town, our brilliant Phillips Collection exhibition Ingres to Kandinsky at the Seoul Arts Center.

Director’s Desk: Dispatch From Shanghai

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Photo: Dorothy Kosinski

A little over a month ago I attended a U.S.–China Museum Leaders Forum in Shanghai sponsored by Asia Society and The Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries. Alongside the conference we were able to visit the gigantic studio of the artist Zhang Huan near Shanghai. Some of these photos reveal the range of his work including monumental sculptures of unusual materials. The large scale painting based on a historical event is executed with the ash from incense and produced an overpowering aromatic presence. This brings to mind Zhang Huan’s ash covered sculpture head currently on view here at the Phillips. You can find it on the second floor in the installation A Tribute to Anita Reiner. The artist appropriates a material that resonates with meaning from Buddhist temple tradition.

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Photo: Dorothy Kosinski

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Photo: Dorothy Kosinski

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Photo: Dorothy Kosinski

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Photo: Dorothy Kosinski

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Photo: Dorothy Kosinski