Kishio Suga, Installation view at Blum & Poe, Los Angeles, 2012

Kishio Suga

Kishio Suga

March 1 – April 14, 2018
New York

Who Can Be Strangers? The Art of Mono-ha and Dansaekhwa

July 7 – September 16, 2017
San Francisco

Kishio Suga

February 25 – April 22, 2017
Los Angeles

Kishio Suga, Robert Morris

March 12 – May 7, 2016
Tokyo

Kishio Suga

January 8 – February 21, 2015
New York

Kishio Suga

Frieze Masters

October 17 – 20, 2013
London

Kishio Suga

November 3 – December 22, 2012
Los Angeles

Requiem for the Sun: The Art of Mono-ha

Curated by Mika Yoshitake
February 25 – April 14, 2012
Los Angeles

Biography

Kishio Suga (b. 1944, Morioka, Iwate Prefecture, Japan) works in multiple media, spanning site-specific installation, assemblages, works on paper, and performance. Suga moved to Tokyo in 1964 to study oil painting at Tama Art University, and soon after graduating in 1968 diverged from the mode of illusionistic painting that was popular at the time, and gained recognition for arranging natural and manmade materials in unprecedented installations. Examples from this timeframe include Parallel Strata (1969), a totemic enclosure made of paraffin wax, and Soft Concrete (1970), four vertical steel plates arranged into a square and shored up with a mound of oil-infused concrete. These works and his influential early essays situated him as one of the key practitioners and theorists among a loose group of artists who collectively came to be known as Mono-ha (“school of things”), who took natural and industrial materials and arranged them in mostly unaltered, ephemeral states. Suga describes his approach as an ongoing investigation of mono (things/materials), and the jōkyō (situation) that binds them. This "activation of existence" focuses as much on the interdependency of these various elements and the surrounding space as on the materials themselves. Almost none of Suga’s historical site-specific installations exist today; typically, they were discarded at the close of each exhibition. However, the artist has remade them on numerous occasions since the mid-1980s, when Mono-ha began to receive institutional recognition in Europe. While his re-creations are always based on an original core concept, they are not intended as exact replicas; Suga adapts their scale and constituent parts to the characteristics of each site. The artist has developed a holistic view of art’s existence in the world from his broad readings of philosophy ranging from Jean Baudrillard, Gilles Deleuze, Kitarō Nishida, Keiji Nishitani, and Mahāyāna Buddhism. Suga currently lives and works in Ito City, Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan.

Over the past five decades, Suga has had numerous solo exhibitions in Japan, including retrospectives at the Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo (2015) and the Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Hiroshima (1997). In recent years he has been the focus of renewed international interest, beginning with his inclusion in Requiem for the Sun: The Art of Mono-ha, curated by Mika Yoshitake and held at Blum & Poe, Los Angeles in 2012. This large-scale survey was the first overview of the movement in North America. Blum & Poe subsequently presented Suga’s first solo exhibitions in Los Angeles in 2012 and New York in 2015. He subsequently held his first European retrospective at Pirelli HangarBicocca, Milan, Italy (2016) and his first solo museum exhibition in the United States at Dia: Chelsea, New York, NY (2016). Suga is frequently included in global survey exhibitions, most recently: Japanorama. New vision on art since 1970 at the Centre Pompidou-Metz, Metz, France (2017); Parallel Views: Italian and Japanese Art from the 1950s, 60s, and 70s, The Warehouse, Dallas, TX (2013); Prima Materia, Punta della Dogana, Venice, Italy (2013); and Tokyo 1955–1970: A New Avant-Garde, Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY (2012). A re-creation of his groundbreaking outdoor installation Law of Situation (1971) was displayed in the Gaggiandre shipyard at the 57th Venice Biennale, Italy (2017). His work is featured in many institutional collections, including the Centre Pompidou-Metz, Metz, France; Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, TX; Glenstone Foundation, Potomac, MD; Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi; Long Museum, Shanghai, China; M+, Hong Kong, China; Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, Japan; National Museum of Art, Osaka, Japan; National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, Japan; Pinault Collection, Venice, Italy; Rachofsky Collection, Dallas, TX; Tate Modern, London, UK; Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan; and the Yokohama Museum of Art, Yokohama, Japan.

Selected Works

News

Artforum: Kishio Suga

05/01/2018

ArtAsiaPacific: Kishio Suga at Pirelli HangarBicocca

03/01/2017

ArtAsiaPacific: Reflections from Almanac 2016

12/01/2016

Pirellli HangarBicocca | Kishio Suga, "Situations"

12/20/2016

Frieze: Kishio Suga at Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo

06/01/2015

ArtAsiaPacific: Kishio Suga: Situated Latency

05/01/2015

Related Publications

Kishio Suga: Situations

Karla Black & Kishio Suga: A New Order

Kishio Suga: Situated Latency

Kishio Suga

Kishio Suga

Kishio Suga 1968-1988

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