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Article

Andō, Tadao  

Kenneth Frampton

(b Osaka, Sept 13, 1941).

Japanese architect. Between 1962 and 1969 he travelled extensively, studying first-hand the architecture of Japan, Europe, America, and Africa. In 1969 he founded his own practice in Osaka. An inheritor of the Japanese anti-seismic reinforced-concrete tradition, Andō became one of the leading practitioners in this genre. Habitually using reinforced concrete walls, cast straight from the formwork, he created a uniquely Minimalist modern architecture. Early in his career he spoke of using ‘walls to defeat walls’, by which he meant deploying orthogonal, strictly geometrical volumes to resist the random chaos of the average Japanese megalopolis. To this end most of his early houses are highly introspective; notable examples include two houses in Sumiyoshi, Osaka: the award-winning, diminutive terraced Azuma House (1976) and the Glass Block Wall House (1979), built for the Horiuchi family. The latter is a courtyard house that gains light and views solely from its small internal atrium. The Koshino House (...

Article

Arai, Tomie  

Margo Machida

(b New York, Aug 16, 1949).

American printmaker and installation artist. Born and raised in New York City, Arai, a third-generation Japanese American printmaker, mixed-media artist, public artist and cultural activist, studied art at the Philadelphia College of Art and The Printmaking Workshop in New York. Since the 1970s, her diverse projects have ranged from individual works to large-scale public commissions (see Public art in the 21st century). She has designed permanent public works, including an interior mural commemorating the African burial ground in lower Manhattan and an outdoor mural for Philadelphia’s Chinatown. Other works include Wall of Respect for Women (1974), a mural on New York’s Lower East Side, which was a collaboration between Arai and women from the local community. Her art has been exhibited in such venues as the Bronx Museum of the Arts, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Museum of Modern Art, International Center for Photography, P.S.1 Museum, the Brooklyn Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Hispanic Art, all New York and the Library of Congress, Washington, DC. She is the recipient of awards and fellowships from National Endowment for the Arts, New York Foundation for the Arts, and Joan Mitchell Foundation....

Article

Araki, Nobuyoshi  

Iizawa Kohtaro

(b Tokyo, May 25, 1940).

Japanese photographer. He graduated from the engineering department of Chiba University in 1963 and in the same year received the Taiyō prize for Satchin (Tokyo, 1964), a photographic series whose title was the pet name of a little girl. In 1971 he published the privately printed photographic collection Senchimentaru na tabi (‘Sentimental journey’; Tokyo, 1971) in which his own private life, in particular his wedding and honeymoon, was displayed in diary form. At first glance they seem to be naive records but in fact are staged. He also gave a performance in 1972 called the Super-Photo concert in which these photographs were reproduced on a photocopier, bound and sent, as a collection, by post. He later became very popular through photographs that skilfully anticipated public demand, accompanied by essays written in a risqué style. A prolific worker, he published many collections of essays and photographs, including Otoko to onna no aida ni wa shashinki ga aru...

Article

Architecture and the automobile  

Robert Buerglener

[motor car]

Architecture and the automobile have been intimately connected since the late 19th century. The attributes of cars required specific architectural solutions for manufacture, sales, and service. On a broader level, the overall built environment was forever changed by roadside structures designed to meet the needs of drivers.

Automobile factories evolved in tandem with mass production; modular form and open floor spaces provided flexibility in machine placement and possibilities for expansion as production needs changed. Detroit-based architect Albert Kahn, with his associate Ernest Wilby (1868–1957), set a new standard for 20th-century industrial buildings through innovative use of space and materials. For the Packard Company’s Building Number Ten (Detroit, 1905; enlarged 1909), Kahn used reinforced concrete to create modular bays, repeatable horizontally and vertically, with wide interior spans and large window surfaces. For Ford’s Highland Park factory (begun 1909; see fig.), Kahn designed a multi-building complex of reinforced concrete and steel-framed buildings that housed machinery strategically in the sequence of production. In Ford’s River Rouge manufacturing complex in Dearborn, MI (...

Article

Ba, Amadou  

El Hadji Sy

(b Agniam Thiodaye Matam, July 11, 1945).

Senegalese painter. Primarily an autodidact, he also learnt engraving at the Institut National des Arts du Senegal, Dakar, in 1975. His early work was often rendered in china ink, but he later worked mainly with oil or acrylic paint. In the 1980s and 1990s his canvases focused on the world of Fulani cow herders, as seen in Vache (1988; Frankfurt am Main, Friedrich Axt priv. col.). Ba employs a palette of subtle, earth-tone hues to suggest the arid Sahelian landscape, populating these scenes with stylized cows and herders. His painting is often appreciated by collectors for its visual affinity with ancient rock art. He was considered for membership of the Ecole de Dakar and participated in the government-sponsored exhibition Art contemporain du Senegal, which traveled internationally from 1974 to 1982.

Contemporary Art of Senegal/Art Contemporain du Senegal (exh.cat., Hamilton, Ont., A.G., 1979) F. Axt and El Hadji M. B. Sy...

Article

Xu Bing  

Melissa Chiu

revised by Christine Ho

(b Chongqing, 1955).

Chinese installation artist, active also in the USA. Xu Bing spent much of his childhood in Beijing where his mother worked as a librarian and father as a professor of history at Peking University. He has said that being surrounded by ancient and contemporary books during this formative period of his life gave him an intense interest in their typography, binding, printing techniques, and materiality. “Sent-down” to the countryside between 1974 and 1977 during the Cultural Revolution (1966–1976), Xu participated in rural cultural activities, sketching peasants and editing the Brilliant Mountain Flowers Magazine. As part of the first class of students returning to university after the Cultural Revolution, Xu entered the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing in 1977. Admitted to the printmaking rather than painting department, Xu was a student of printmakers Li Hua and Gu Yuan (1919–1996); he continued to teach at the Central Academy after his graduation in ...

Article

Lee Bul  

Joan Kee

(b Yongwol, Kangwon Province, Jan 25, 1964).

Korean mixed media and performance artist. Lee studied sculpture at Hongik University in Seoul. Upon graduation Lee staged performance-based works in venues throughout Seoul and Tokyo during the late 1980s and early 1990s. Many of these performances concerned the subject of the human body and deployed the strategy of masquerade to parody and hyperbolize masculine representations of women. At this time Lee also began creating sculptural installations that marked the beginning of her long-standing use of such non-traditional materials as resin, sequins, foam, and rubber. Such materials were often used for their symbolic associations as well as their formal properties.

From around 1996, Lee moved towards an exploration of the imagined body. The references that Lee drew upon became increasingly abstract, although she consistently maintained her interest in exploring the role of formal qualities, such as colour, scale, and texture, in producing meaning. Lee moved from works such as I Need You/Hydra...

Article

Chang, Patty  

Aileen June Wang

(b San Leandro, CA, Feb 3, 1972).

American performance and video artist of Chinese ancestry. Chang earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, San Diego in 1994. She showed her first solo exhibition at Jack Tilton Gallery, New York, in 1999. Her body of work focused on how people can be deceived, either through sight—what one sees is not necessarily true—or through mainstream assumptions about such topics as Asia, sexuality, and socially accepted behavior. Chang attributed her past stint in a cybersex company as the catalyst for exploring illusion as a theme. She realized that video flattened three-dimensional, live performances into a stream of two-dimensional images, enabling her to engage in visual deception.

Most of Chang’s early works investigated problems of gender and sexuality, using her own body and elements suggesting violence or transgression. The photograph Fountain (1999) depicted her inside a cubicle of a public lavatory, with a urinal visible on the far wall. Wearing a business suit, she knelt on hands and knees, seemingly kissing herself but actually slurping water off a mirror on the floor. The accompanying video focused on Chang’s face and her passionate interaction with her own reflection. While the photograph suggested female humiliation in a male world, the video complicated matters by implying that the act was motivated by narcissism....

Article

Chin, Mel  

Mary M. Tinti

(b Houston, TX, 1951).

American sculptor, installation and conceptual artist. His multimedia works investigate the pathology of contemporary culture. Mel Chin was born and raised in Houston, Texas to parents of Chinese birth and received his BA in 1975 from the Peabody College in Nashville, Tennessee. The works in Chin’s oeuvre are diverse in both medium and subject, but a consistent undercurrent of social, political, and environmental responsibility runs throughout. Whether a sculpture, film, video game, installation, public project or earthwork, Chin’s artworks consistently targeted a broad spectrum of pressing cultural and ecological interests and spread their message in subtle, if not viral ways.

In the 1980s, Chin produced a number of sculptures that set the stage for his ever-evocative artistic journey. The Extraction of Plenty from What Remains: 1823 (1988–9) is a frequently referenced piece from this period. It is a symbolic encapsulation of the effects of the Monroe Doctrine, referencing the complicated dealings between the US (represented by truncated replicas of White House columns) and Central America (represented by a cornucopia of mahogany branches, woven banana-tree fiber, and a surface layer of hardened blood, mud, and coffee grinds). From the 1990s, however, Chin moved away from strictly gallery-based installations and began creating works that directly engaged contemporary culture in a variety of physical and theoretical landscapes....

Article

Chu, Ken  

Margo Machida

Asian American mixed-media and installation artist and cultural activist. Ken Chu came to the United States from Hong Kong in 1971, settling in California where he received a BFA in film studies from San Francisco Art Institute (1986). Relocating to New York City after graduation, his encounters with local Asian American artists, activists and cultural organizations supported his artistic efforts, in which he often drew upon subjects that emerged organically from personal experience in the US as a gay Asian man. Adopting popular cultural idioms from film and comics, while also drawing upon symbols and motifs from Chinese and other Asian cultures, his imagery from this pivotal period featured Asian men cast as prototypically American masculine figures, such as California surfers and cowboys, who populate colorful, imaginary scenarios of cross-cultural contact, mixing and desire. In Western societies, where the dominant norms are non-Asian and few viable role models for Asian men exist, Chu’s art strongly asserted their collective presence and place. His socially inspired work has since also engaged matters of anti-Asian violence, internalized racism, stereotyping, homophobia and the impact of AIDS on Asian diasporic communities....

Article

Song Dong  

Britta Erickson

revised by Peggy Wang

(b Beijing, Dec 6, 1966).

Chinese performance, video, and installation artist. Song studied oil painting at Capital Normal University, Beijing (1985–1989), after which he was a middle school art teacher, until his exhibition schedule grew too demanding. Like his wife Yin Xiuzhen, Song abandoned painting in favor of installation and performance art soon after graduating. In 1994 his first exhibition of works in these media was shut down after half an hour.

A consistent theme in Song’s oeuvre has been material impermanence. As a metaphorical expression of this theme, from 1995 he wrote diary entries on a stone slab using a brush dipped in water as an ongoing performance, Writing Diary with Water. For Printing on Water (1996), he stamped the Lhasa River repeatedly with a stamp carved with the Chinese character for water. Neither action left a permanent mark, despite the energy invested in them. One of his best-known works, ...

Article

Yang Fudong  

Britta Erickson

(b Beijing, Oct 7, 1971).

Chinese photographer, video artist and film maker . He studied in the oil painting department of the China Academy of Fine Arts, Hangzhou from 1991 until graduation in 1995. In 1993, for his performance piece Elsewhere, he did not speak for three months. Returning to live in Beijing (1995–7), he studied film for two weeks at the Beijing Film School (1996), and wrote his first film script for An Estranged Paradise (filmed 1997; completed 2002). In 1998 he moved to Shanghai, and began participating in exhibitions in 1999.

The mises-en-scène and careful compositions of Yang’s photographs exhibit the influence of his rigorous education as an oil painter. Lighting and colour—or the lack thereof—contribute significantly to the tenor of each work. Yang’s ability to control the framing, not just of photographic images but also of moving images, in his videos and films sets him apart from other Chinese video artists....

Article

Funakoshi, Katsura  

John-Paul Stonard

(b Morioka City, Iwate Prefecture, May 25, 1951).

Japanese sculptor. He studied at Tokyo University of Art and Design (1971–5) and Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music (1975–7). In 1986 he was awarded a one-year scholarship, from the Bureau of Cultural Properties, to live and work in London. He represented Japan at the 1988 Venice Biennale. Funakoshi’s figurative wooden sculptures refer to both Japanese and European carving techniques and iconography. He began using camphor wood in 1977 chiefly for its organic associations, warmth and colouring, which he likened to Japanese skin pigmentation. His elongated bust-length figures, cut off beneath the elbows and navel, as well as full-length standing figures, have an atmosphere of expressionless restraint. He once described their metaphoric function in the following terms: ‘If I am able to see the world clearly by looking within myself, then I can make a statement concerning human existence through the depiction of a single person’ (exh. cat. ...

Article

Gensler  

Sara Stevens

American architectural firm started by Arthur Gensler Drue Gensler, and Jim Follett in 1965 in San Francisco, CA. M. Arthur Gensler jr (b Brooklyn, New York, 1935) attended Cornell University to study architecture (BArch, 1957). The firm began doing build-outs for retail stores and corporate offices, and initially established itself in the unglamorous area of interior architecture. Thirty years later and without mergers or acquisitions, it had grown to become one of the largest architecture firms in the world, having pioneered the global consultancy firm specializing in coordinated rollouts of multi-site building programmes. By 2012 the firm had over 3000 employees in over 40 offices. From the beginning, Art Gensler conceived of a global firm with multiple offices serving corporate clients whose businesses were becoming more international. Instead of the ‘starchitect’ model of his contemporaries such as I. M. Pei or Paul Rudolph, Gensler wanted an ego-free office that existed to serve client needs, not pursue a designer’s aesthetic agenda at the client’s expense. By adopting new web-based computing technologies and integrated design software in the early 1990s, the firm stayed well connected across their many offices and were more able than their competitors to manage large multi-site projects. Expanding from the services a traditional architecture firm offers, the company pushed into new areas well suited to their information technology and interiors expertise, such as organizational design, project management, and strategic facilities planning....

Article

Wang Guangyi  

Mia Yinxing Liu

(b Harbin, 1957).

Chinese painter, sculptor, and installation artist. Wang Guangyi’s formal education was interrupted by the Cultural Revolution during his teenage years. Afterwards, he attended the China Academy of Art (Zhejiang) and graduated in 1984 with a degree in oil painting.

In the wake of the avant-garde art movement in China in the 1980s, Wang became part of the Northern Art Group and produced a series of paintings whose subjects reflected skepticism towards the philosophies and themes of classical art in the West. The series used a cold, gray palette to illustrate frozen and barren Nordic settings consciously removed from emotion, revealing Wang’s distrust of passion and his faith in reason and rationality at the time, a distrust that was an antidote to the cultic zeal towards Mao and the ideals of revolution in the preceding years.

Wang’s groundbreaking series of Mao portraits in 1988 were a continuation of the conscious move away from emotional manipulation and viewer identification. In these portraits, Wang superimposed a grid over Mao. The grid served as a barrier between the adorer and the object of adoration, drawing attention to the print material of the image, and highlighting Mao as an object of common household use. If in previous decades Mao’s portraits had been used as an icon for fervent adoration and incentive for socialist construction, here in Wang’s paintings the Mao portraits were candidly presented as ready-made and found objects. However, these appropriated Mao pictures were quite ambivalent in meaning. To Wang, they were not an indictment against socialism or Mao, but rather a reaffirmation of the Dadaist spirit of the Cultural Revolution....

Article

Cai Guoqiang  

Melissa Chiu

revised by Peggy Wang

(b Quanzhou, Dec 8, 1957).

Chinese installation artist. Cai studied at the Shanghai Theatre Academy, completing his degree in stage design in 1985. He is best known for ephemeral, large-scale explosion-works using gunpowder. Cai’s multivalent associations with this medium range from childhood memories to cosmological beliefs; its status as a Chinese invention, particularly one related to alchemy, aligns with his interests in Chinese philosophies about the universe. He has also tied gunpowder to his childhood in Quanzhou, where he witnessed skirmishes between China and Taiwan along what was known as the Fujian Front. When Cai first turned to this medium in the 1980s, it was out of an urgency to shock his work beyond the confines of conventional media and to challenge his own cautious approach to art. Over time, as the medium has accumulated multiple meanings, Cai has continued to use it to ruminate on artistic possibilities, cultural references, and ways of thinking about the universe....

Article

Hasegawa, Itsuko  

Botond Bognar

(b Shizuoka, 1941).

Japanese architect. She graduated from the School of Architecture at Kantō Gakuin University in Yokohama in 1963, and from 1963 to 1968 she worked with Kiyonori Kikutake. In 1969 she continued her studies with Kazuo Shinohara at the Tokyo Institute of Technology and in 1976 established her own studio in Tokyo. Initially she was strongly influenced by Shinohara and was also considered to be a member of the so-called ‘Shinohara school’, but the impact of his abstract Minimalism on her designs has always been complemented by the use of common elements. All her buildings are characterized by an extensive and straightforward application of industrial materials such as steel, aluminium, metallic paints, reinforced concrete and inorganic material.

The majority of Hasegawa’s early works were small residences such as the house (1977) in Yaizu No. 2 or the house (1980) at Kuwahara in Matsuyama. In the 1980s she completed several larger public buildings, including the Aono building (...

Article

Hasegawa, Jun  

Morgan Falconer

(b Mie, 1969).

British painter of Japanese birth. She studied at Wimbledon School of Art, London (1991–2) and Goldsmiths’ College, London (1993–5). Hasegawa came to prominence in the mid-1990s with large cut-out tableaux which bear idealized images of young people. Constructed from MDF and painted in gloss, they resemble displays from store windows. Initially she based her work on images of models that she took from magazines: Untitled (1995; see Artforum, 1996, p. 38) is a monumental depiction of an already tall female model who teeters on one foot. Hasegawa’s interest in glamour soon gave way to a preoccupation with the standardization of ideal youths in commercial advertizing imagery, and to examine this further she began to use her friends as models. Many of her figures stand alone, such as Boy in White T-Shirt (1996; see 1997 exh. cat., p. 68): the well-built, healthy looking youth smiles, appearing relaxed in a T-shirt; the schematic, illustrative style of cartoons lends him definition and a pale palette colours him. Some figures appear in groups and suggest narrative: ...

Article

Hayakawa, Kunihiko  

Hiroshi Watanabe

(b Tokyo, Nov 19, 1941).

Japanese architect. He graduated from Waseda University, Tokyo, in 1966 and received a Master of Environmental Design degree from Yale University, New Haven, CT, in 1971. Between 1966 and 1977 he was a member of the design department of Takenaka Komuten Co. Ltd, one of the largest construction companies in Japan. In 1978 he opened his own office in Tokyo. Hayakawa saw in the Tokyo cityscape a floating, fragmented quality that inspired his architectural approach. His designs resembled stage sets; he reduced buildings to compositions of lines and planes with the use of pastel colours. For example, his House at a Bus Stop (1982), Tokyo, addresses problems of urban living such as noise by ‘layering’ the street façade with a series of wall planes. The spaces between the layers let in light and create a gradual transition from the exterior to the interior world. Other works include House at a Crossroad (...

Article

Zhang Huan  

Melissa Chiu

revised by Orianna Cacchione

(b Anyang, Jan 23, 1965).

Chinese performance artist, active also in the USA. Zhang studied art at Henan University and the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. In the early 1990s he moved to Da Shan Zi (also known as Beijing’s East Village), an area on the outskirts of the city inhabited by a community of artists and itinerant workers from all over the country. Along with his peers, Zhu Ming (b 1972) and Ma Liuming (b 1969), he began to stage performances that became a central part of the activities of the artist community. Zhang is considered one of the pre-eminent performance artists of his generation in China.

In the mid-1990s, performances such as 12 Square Meters (1994), 65KG (1994), and To Add One Meter to an Anonymous Mountain (1995) became synonymous with experimental art practice in China. In 12 Square Meters, Zhang sat naked in a dirty public toilet near his home for one hour. He covered his body with a sticky substance of honey mixed with fish oil, which attracted all manner of insects. Another work, entitled ...