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Mito Arts Foundation 1-6-8 Goken-cho, Mito-shi, Ibaraki 310-0063 JAPAN
Tel. (+81)-(0)29-227-8111 / Fax. (+81)-(0)29-227-8110 /

8 Days - Beuys in Japan
Oct. 31 (Sat) to Jan. 24, 2010 (Sun)


We are pleased to announce the holding of the "8 Days ; Beuys in Japan" exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery, Art Tower Mito (ATM). The exhibition explores the works and activities of Joseph Beuys (1921-1986), an outstanding artist of 20th-century Germany, through his relationship with Japan.

Joseph Beuys was a very influential artist for his innovative ideas of art. He provoked society through his activities and expanded the notion of art into politics, the economy and social movements.

Beuys was born in Krefeld, Germany in 1921. As a German soldier, he fought in World War II; however, in 1944, he was shot down during a flight above the Crimean Peninsula in the Soviet Union, and was rescued by a Tatar tribe. After the war, he entered the Düsseldorf Academy of Fine Arts to study sculpture, and then started his career as an artist and professor.

In the early 1960s, Beuys joined Fluxus, which was founded by George Machiunas. Nam June Paik was also a member. With this group, he first unveiled his performance, the so-called "Aktion," to the public.

In the late 1960s, when student movements became more active, Beuys formed the German Student Party and protested against the academic system, although he himself was a professor. In the 1970s, Beuys founded the "Organization for Direct Democracy through Referendum" and the "Free International University," and started engaging in the ecology movement. Those activities were already beyond the existing definition of "art." Behind those activities were Beuys's ideas of an "extended idea of art" and "social sculpture." The former is the idea that art involves not just drawing paintings and making sculptures, but extends also into every action of our daily lives, as long as it is practiced with subjective creativity. The latter means that society is molded by humans' creativity.

In 1984, Beuys visited Japan and showed various works, including installations and performances, while also holding discussions with students and giving lectures. He left a strong impression in the Japanese art world. ATM's exhibition, "8 Days – Beuys in Japan," will include important works and documents such as a never-before-seen documentary film made in 1984 when Beuys came to Japan, as well as more than 250 multiple pieces and a video interview with members of the Japanese art world who had contacted Beuys. In addition, the ideas behind Beuys' work will be investigated through an international symposium, a discussion session, and a live performance.

Title: 8 Days - Beuys in Japan
Venue: Contemporary Art Gallery, Art Tower Mito
Dates: Saturday, October 31, 2009 to Sunday, January 24, 2010
Closed on Mondays (except public holiday November 23, January 11) , November 24, New Year Holidays (December 27-January 4) and January 12
Opening Hours: 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (no admittance after 5:30 p.m.)
Admission: ¥800 General, ¥600 Advance purchase/Groups of more than 20 people
Free Children through junior high school (9th grade), Seniors 65 and older, People with certified disabilities (along with one attendant each)

One-year passes: ¥1,000 High Teen Pass "H.T.P." for youth aged 15-19, ¥2,500 Adult Pass for people aged 20-64

Organized by: Mito Arts Foundation, The Yomiuri Shimbun
Supported by: Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, GOETHE-INSTITUT JAPAN
Supports from: I&S BBDO Inc., Asahi Breweries,Ltd., SOUM Corporation, TAKEO CO., LTD., Research Group of Theory and History of Arts, Graduate School of Letters, Hokkaido University
Curated by: Mizuki Takahashi (Curator, Contemporary Art Center, ATM)
Curatorial assistant: Sayako Kadowaki(Assistant Curator, Contemporary Art Center, ATM)


1. International Symposium "Call Back Beuys in 21st Century!"

Joseph Beuys developed his idea of the "expanded idea of art" through discussions about economy and politics as well as making artworks. In this symposium, specialists from different fields will discuss Beuys' spirit, vision and art, as well as his influence today.
- Date and time: Nov. 15 (Sun), 2009, 1:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. (doors open at 12:30 p.m.)
- Venue: ConcertHall, Art Tower Mito
- Capacity300 persons (first-come, first-served)
- Fee: included in the exhibition admission

1:15-3:00 p.m. Part 1: Keynote Lectures
Rene Block (Curator, Director of TANAS Berlin)
Prof. Dr. Eugine Blume (Head of Hamburger Bahnhoff)

3:15-4:40 p.m. Part 2: Panel Discussion 1, "Consumerism and Utopia"
Moderator: Yukiko Shikata (Curator, NTT InteCommunication Ceter [ICC])
Panelists: Masaki Nakamasa (Professor, University of Kanazawa), Yoshitaka Mouri (Assistant professor, Tokyo University of the Arts), Kazuhiro Yamamoto (Senior curator, Tochigi Prefectural Museum of Fine Arts)

4:50-6:10 p.m. Panel discussion 2 "Is Aktion still alive?"
Moderator: Kazue Kobata (Professor, Tokyo University of the Arts)
Panelists: Noboru Tsubaki (Artist), Yoshio Shirakawa (Artist), Masanori Oda a.k.a. Il Commons (Media activist)

2. Ichiro Endo Performance, "For Love, Peace and Future"
The emerging artist Ichiro Endo will practice the slow method of progression in the ATM Plaza throughout the period of the exhibition.
- Time and Date: 10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m., everyday (expect for November 4-13, 17-30)

3. Video Screening "Beuys in Japan"
Screening of the 1984 documentary video, "Beuys in Japan" (director, Naoya Hatakeyama). The video will be shown on two separate days.
- Date and time: Saturday, November 7, Sunday, 8, 2009, 2:00-3:00 p.m. (doors open at 1:30)
Venue: Workshoproom, Contemporary Art Gallery, Art Tower Mito
Capacity80 persons (first-come, first-served)
Fee: included in the exhibition admission

4. Discussion Session, "Today's Alternative"
- Speaker: Sakiko Sugawa (Director of Hanare), Mizuki Endo (Director of ARCUS), Tadasu Takamine (Artist)
- Date and time: Saturday, January 9, 2009, 2:00-4:00 p.m. (doors open at 1:30)
- Venue: Workshoproom, Contemporary Art Gallery, Art Tower Mito
- Capacity80 persons (first-come, first-served)
-Fee: included in the exhibition admission

Curator Talk
Mizuki Takahashi, Curator of Contemporary Art Center, Art Tower Mito, will talk about the exhibition.
- Date: Saturday, December 5, 2009 2:00-3:00 p.m.
- Fee: included in the exhibition admission
- Meet the Curator at the gallery entrance.

Weekend Gallery Talk
CAC (Contemporary Art Center) so-called "gallery talkers" will guide you through the exhibition. Meet at the entrance of the Gallery. Each talk lasts approximately 40 minutes.
- Dates: Saturdays and Sundays between November 14, 2009 and January 24, 2010 (except December 5, New Year Holidays)
Times: 2:30 to 3:10 p.m. (approx. 40 minutes)
Fee: Free (but a ticket to the exhibition must be purchased)
Meeting point: Gallery entrance

Gallery Tour for Parents with Babies
Staff members will give gallery tours, with special attention given to those with small children. The tour is designed particularly for preschool children and their parents.
Dates: Fridays, November 20 and 27
Starting times: 9:30 a.m., 11:00 a.m.
Capacity: Five parent-child groups per session (first-come, first-served)
Fee: Included in the exhibition admission.
Reservations: Call the ATM Contemporary Art Center at (029) 227-8120.

OTHER PROJECTS during the exhibition period

CRITERIUM 77 Katsunobu Yaguchi
Date: Saturday, October 31, 2009 to Sunday, January 24, 2010
Venue: Gallery 9, Contemporary Art Gallery, Art Tower Mito
Sponsors: ITH Co., Asia system service Ltd.
Curated by: Yuu Takehisa, (Curator of Contemporary Art Center, Art Tower Mito)
Fee: Included in the exhibition admission.

Katsuhiko Hibino "HIBINO CUP"
Together with artist Katsuhiko Hibino, participants will make goalposts, balls and uniforms, and then hold and play a mini-soccer game using their own creations.
Date and time: Sunday, November 1, 2009, 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Venue: Plaza, Art Tower Mito
Target: Elementary school pupils and older
Fee¥500, ¥2,000 for group part in pation
Organized by: Mito Arts Foundation, NPO Idaten, HIBINO CUP WorkingTeam
Supports from: FC Mito Holly Hock

Katsuhiko Hibino "Asatte Asagao Mito 2009 Harvest"
Date: Sunday, November 23, 2009 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
Venue: Upstairs of corridor, Art Tower Mito
Meet the artist upstairs of the ATM corridor
Organized byMito Arts Foundation, MITO Junior Chamber Inc.
Supports from: Mito Agricultural High School


Contemporary Art Center (CAC) Exhibitions

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Tel. 029-227-8111 / Fax. 029-227-8110 /
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