featured in the Celebration series of three exhibitions: in Kyoto, Poznań and Szczecin
The artistic map of cultural events in Japan and Poland features a new project, organized on an unprecedented scale. Consisting of a series of contemporary art exhibitions, Celebration is the result of a two-year collaborative effort of enthusiasts who created a unique project with a potential to become a cyclical event that will influence the audiences in the two countries and remain in the minds of the viewers for the coming years. The events take place in three cities: Kyoto, Poznań and Szczecin. The shows are curated by prof. Akiko Kasuya, Paweł Pachciarek and Stanisław Ruksza (Szczecin), while the function of the programming advisor is performed by the legendary Japanese curator, prof. Akira Tatehata.
21 artists and art collectives from Poland and Japan were invited to participate in the exhibition. During artistic residencies held earlier, they created new works solely for the purposes of the project. The bold, challenging logistic concept assumes that each artist tells their own story in three independent acts-chapters, understood as a sequence of one narrative developed over the three shows. Although the exhibitions have been conceived as partially independent projects, it is worth seeing all three of them to thoroughly follow and capture the essence of the activities, artistic strategies and curatorial concept.
The exhibition is held as part of the program marking the 100th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Poland and Japan. It is the collaboration that lies at the heart of the whole project, whose aim is establishing a dialogue in artistic couples.
One of key objectives of Celebration is to provide conditions for a genuine and “live” exchange of experiences between artists, and hence, increase the potential to create completely new works. Both artists and curators faced the difficult task of explaining selected aesthetic, social or historical categories from two perspectives, so that the audiences in Poland and Japan would not get the impression of superficiality or narrative haughtiness in the works presented on both sides of the globe.
Despite distance-imposed limitations, communication problems or different creative perspectives, it was possible to lead to a meeting of the artists involved in the project and, as a result, to create a series of collaborative works, such as Stach Szumski and Satoshi Kawata, or – as in the case of Łukasz Surowiec and Yuriko Sasaoka – prepare joint workshops that will take place both in Poland and Japan. Regardless of the result, the most important thing – thanks to invitations to residences of artists from Poland to Japan and from Japan to Poland – a platform for creative dialogue and mutual inspiration for the coming years was established.
Mono no aware at TRAFO is the third, crowning act in the Celebration series of exhibitions held in Kyoto, Poznań and Szczecin.
Mono no aware is one of the basic categories in the Japanese aesthetics. The term refers to the process of finding a melancholic beauty in the world. Referring to such processes, the show simultaneously underlines the conceptual, aesthetic or spiritual relationship between the East and West. What seems to be reserved only for a given cultural circle, in the case of the “pathos of things” (mono no aware) of the East, is complemented with the anthropology of the Western tragic conducted by Max Scheler. The show tries to show what is common, which provides the foundation for the new, rather than presents differences.
opening of the exhibition in Kyoto: May 18-19, 2019
opening of the exhibition in Poznań: May 31, 2019
The exhibition was initiated by the Adam Mickiewicz Institute, key partner of the project.
The Adam Mickiewicz Institute’s mission is to present Polish culture and heritage on the international scene, also through the Culture.pl website – a daily updated service with information about the most interesting events related to Polish culture. As part of the activities carried out so far all over the world, the Adam Mickiewicz Institute has presented over 8 thousand events, seen by nearly 60 million viewers.
The exhibition is held as part of the program marking the 100th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Poland and Japan.
Gyro. Sasaoka Yuriko. 2019, film still