Japanese Artists, Sculpture by Other Means, 2012, ONE AND J, Installation View  64
ONE AND J. Gallery is pleased to announce Sculpture by Other Means, a four-person group exhibition curated by Gabriel Ritter featuring work by Masaya Chiba, Teppei Kaneuji, Yuki Kimura, and Koki Tanaka.
Sculpture by Other Means examines the ways in which a sculptural practice might be realized through various other medium—whether it be painting, collage, photography, or video. The work included in this exhibition occupies a liminal space between the visual and material that straddles the already blurry lines that have come to define sculpture as a medium. In each instance, the artist is confronted with the problem of exceeding the limits of their chosen medium and responds with an object-oriented solution. This turn to sculpture is dual in nature, testing both the limits of collage, painting, photography, and video while also offering up new possibilities for sculpture as well.
While there is no singular style unifying the work of these four artists, they all share in common the use of found objects and/or found photographs as a means to reference the outside world. By incorporating readymade elements into a purely visual field, the work of these artists insists on a material presence situated squarely in reality. Overall, this renewed interest in objects and materiality reflects a desire on the part of these artists to connect meaningfully with the world at large.
The paintings of Masaya Chiba are suspended between the genres of landscape and figure painting while his overall practice oscillates between sculpture and painting. This surreal space is populated by ghostly white figures the artist sculpts from wooden dowels and papier-mâché that are set against sprawling natural landscapes. The artist endows these figurines with a life of their own, often performing ritualistic acts of burning or pilgrimage with them. In this way, the artist utilizes sculpture as a spiritual medium to realize his paintings.
The collage work of Teppei Kanueuji, with its piles of stacked images culled from various print media, seems to anticipate a sculptural language. While articulated in two-dimensional space, the collage work is preoccupied with issues of gravity, mass, and structure and are constructed through an additive process much like sculpture. Kaneuji realizes these works in three dimensional space through his White Discharge and Hakuchizu series, both of which involve the accumulation of everyday objects either entombed in thick white resin or covered with a layer of white powder.
The photographer Yuki Kimura, will exhibit work from her pivotal series, Post-disembodiment (2006) in which found photographs are endowed with so-called “alter-egos” and “shadows.” These propped wood and Plexiglas panels echo shapes that have been excised from the original image, giving material form to the various layers of meaning contained within a photographic image. While deconstructing the image semantically, these propped panels simultaneously construct a new sculptural language for photography.
The work of Koki Tanaka takes shape primarily as video and installation that explores the relationship between objects and actions. His videos record simple gestures performed with ordinary objects in which seemingly “nothing happens.” Yet, through their repetitive composition and heightened attention to detail, Tanaka’s videos compel us to take notice of the mundane phenomena of daily life. Latent patterns and geometrical forms emerge out of actions and otherwise ordinary objects are transformed, providing an epiphany of sorts from moments of everyday life. Tanaka’s object-oriented practice not only explores the relationship between people and things, but the ambiguous space between sculpture and performance as well.