Contemporary Art Center

Original Planning Exhibitions

July 30 (Sat) to October 16 (Sun), 2011

CAFE in Mito 2011 -- Relationships in Color

The city of Mito was hit by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami over an extensive area. Accordingly, due to some damage on the buildings, we had to close the Contemporary Art Center, Art Tower Mito for a time. Now we are pleased to announce that we resume activities with the exhibition, "CAFE in Mito 2011-- Relationships in Color."
CAFE in "CAFE in Mito," which started in 2002, stands for the initials of "Communicable Action for Everybody." With the objective to encourage many citizens to have interest in art and consequently help the city be revitalized, this project has presented various programs, introducing artworks in which visitors can participate, outdoor installations, and interactive events. This time, in consideration of the aftermath of the great earthquake, "CAFE in Mito" is open mainly around the Contemporary Art Center. In cooperation with artists and collaborators whom we have worked with in the Center's history of 20 years, we go back to the starting point of our activities, "to create a place where people come to experience art and have relations with each other through art." With programs including exhibitions of paintings and photographs by artists who showed their works in the past here at the Contemporary Art Center, events and workshops in cooperation with local residents, and Admission-Free Day, we have produced a place where you can enjoy art in a relaxed mood and in different ways of involvement.

Sayaka Akiyama, Ryoko Aoki, Satoru Aoyama, Yuusuke Asai, Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Ichiro Endo,
Gojing-Maru Hayashi, Katsuhiko Hibino, Kodue Hibino×Kaiji Moriyama×Kohske Kawase, Rieko Hidaka,
Naoki Honjo, Akira the Hustler, Zon Ito, Izuru Kasahara, Hideaki Kawashima,Takanobu Kobayashi, Midori Mitamura,
Nadegata Instant Party“Tohru Nakazaki + Daisuke Yamashiro + Tomoko Noda”, Yurie Nagashima, Yoshitomo Nara,
Mika Ninagawa, Yoshinari Nishio, Minako Nishiyama, Shinji Ohmaki, O Jun, Julian Opie, Otomo Yoshihide,
Rico(Satoko Motohashi) , Sakiho Sakai, Asae Soya, Hiroshi Sugito, Tomoko Sugiyama, Yasuhiro Suzuki,
Akiko and Masako Takada, Masakatsu Takagi, Tanotaiga, Toeko Tatsuno, Kaoru Ueda, Akira Yamaguchi
Organized by: Mito Arts Foundation
Grants: Asahi Beer Arts Foundation
Sponsored by: Citizens Group Loving Art Tower Mito
Supported by: Asahi Breweries,Ltd., FOSTER ELECTRIC CO.,LTD., FOSTEX COMPANY

November 3 (Thu, national public holiday), 2011, to January 22 (Sun), 2012


Asami Kiyokawa, an artist actively playing part in wide-ranging activities from art direction to production of artworks, gives a large-scale solo exhibition. Including her original works making good use of her handiwork, using thread and cloth as materials and photographs with embroidery, she has created quality works in different fields---clothing, space design, video, advertisement, illustration, etc. In her Bijo Saishu series, she collects beautiful women by photography and decorates them with embroidery or CG of animals and plants that remind her of that particular woman. This series has become her lifework. Along with her new series on the theme of extinct and endangered species, her new large-scale piece specially produced for this exhibition is on display.

Asami Kiyokawa PROFILE
Asami Kiyokawa, an artist who creates works using cloth and thread and embroidery on photographs, has many fans of different age groups for the unique world she creates. She is also actively working as an art director to produce many CD jackets and advertisements. Additionally she produces “Bijo Saishu” (FRaU/Kodansha Ltd.), in which actresses popular at the moment are turned to animals and plants, and co-produces the cover visual of “SUBARU” (Shueisha Inc.) serially with well-known writers. Her major books include “AKB48 x Bijo Saishu” (Kodansha Ltd.) and picture book “Night on the Galactic Express” (Little More). “Another Place” (Little More) is her latest book. She won a prize at VOCA 2010. Her group-exhibitions include “Stitch by Stitch, Traces I Made with Needle and Thread” (Tokyo Metropolitan Teien Art Museum, 2009) and “Made by Hand, Hanae Mori and young artists” (Art Tower Mito, 2009).

Organizer: Mito Arts Foundation
Grant: Asahi Beer Arts Foundation
Cooperation: Asahi Breweries, Ltd., Oki Data Corporation,SWAROVSKI JAPAN LTD. SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS

Planning: Toshihiro ASAI (Artistic Director, Contemporary Art Center, ATM)

February 11 (Sat, national public holiday) to May 6 (Sun), 2012

Gerda STEINER and Jorg LENZLINGER Exhibition

In 2012, Art Tower Mito (ATM) is pleased to welcome two internationally-active Swiss artists, Gerda STEINER and Jorg LENZLINGER, who will be making their largest exhibition. The exhibition will include site-specific installations consisting of materials collected on their travels world wide and items gathered in places where they have held exhibitions in the past. Not only will the artworks relate about the traditions and cultures of those places, but they will also shed light on the relations that STEINER and LENZLINGER had with the local people. The artworks will be displayed in way that takes advantage of the unique spatial characteristics of ATM, and there will also be an introduction of the two artists' decade-long history of collaboration. The process of making installations with the cooperation of local people provides the opportunity to deepen the bonds between people, letting them share in the joy of creation.

Organizer: Mito Arts Foundation
Grant: Asahi Beer Arts Foundation, Bildungs-, Kultur-und Sportdirektion Kanton Basel-Landschaft /
Cooperation: Asahi Breweries, Ltd.
Planning: Sayako KADOWAKI (Curator, Contemporary Art Center, ATM)


November 3 (Thu, Culture Day holiday), 2011, to January 22 (Sun), 2012

Criterium 82

Participating Artist: Yoichi KAMIMURA
Planning: Mizuki TAKAHASHI (Curator, Contemporary Art Center, ATM)

February 11 (Sat, National Foundation Day holiday) to May 6 (Sun), 2012

Criterium 83

Participating Artist: Yasuto MASUMOTO
Planning: Yuu TAKEHISA (Curator, Contemporary Art Center, ATM)

Educational Programs

Year-round Programs

(1) Contemporary Art Center Volunteers

The Contemporary Art Center (CAC) "Gallery Talkers" are volunteers who give gallery tour for visitors on weekends. They also assist school and other group visits to the ATM and the production of in-house publications. All in all, they work to respond to the many requests that bond the art gallery together with local citizens and to make the most of their visit to the gallery. They also edit and produce the volunteer newsletter, "mikke!".

(2) Art Education Program

The Art Education Programs have been devised for various age groups and educational levels, and most can be conducted at any time in response to requests. Gallery tour for parents with babies is a Pre-school tour aimed at preschoolers and their parents/guardians, while the Pre-school Program carries out similar tours and workshops for children attending kindergartens and day-care centers in Mito City. Meanwhile, the Art Bus program invites students from Mito's elementary and junior high schools to visit the Contemporary Art Gallery giving them the opportunity to view ongoing exhibitions. Educational program coordinators visit schools or the community groups to conduct workshops and lectures. In addition, the Teacher Program is aimed at school teachers, combining gallery tour of the exhibition with workshops.

High School Students Weeks 2012

High School Students Weeks is a month allowing high school students (and anyone aged 15 to 18) free admittance to exhibitions. Also, local schools and organizations cooperate in running a special cafe that operates only during the period, by high-school and college students voluntarily. The cafe serves as a place of communication and learning.

Artist workshop

Workshops at Art Tower Mito (ATM), run by an artist, and aimed at adults.

Session! Gallery Tour for People with Visual Disabilities

A program, with participation by anyone regardless of whether he or she has a disability or not. The point of the program is to view artworks together with another person and then to convey to him or her information about the works and one's impressions of them verbally.

August 20-21 (Sat-Sun), 2011

"Kodomo Collabo Lab - Children Collaboration Laboratory 2011"

Experience art during summer vacation!
A program in which children attend workshops and get hands-on experience trying out the various jobs of people working at Art Tower Mito (ATM), including art curators, PR staff, and ATM Face (gallery attendants). Not only does the program familiarize the children with art and expand their individual creative potentials, but it also fosters their ability to communicate and cooperate with others.

Organizer: Mito Arts Foundation
Co- organizers: Mito City Board of Education Art Culture Activation Project Planning Committee
Grant: Asahi Beer Arts Foundation
Cooperation: Asahi Breweries, Ltd., etc.

September 24 (Sat), 2011

Ensembles Parade 2011

This is the third time that the Ensembles Parade project will have been held since 2009, with citizens participating under the direction of the musician, OTOMO Yoshihide. Teams of various genres and styles, such as marching bands and recorder troupes, will first make a circuit around the central business district of Mito City, after which they will all assemble at the ATM Plaza to form a gargantuan ensemble to play improvised performances under OTOMO'S direction.

Organizers: MeToo Promotion Office, Mito Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mito Arts Foundation

Omiyage Project – Souvenir Project

A project in which artists and local companies collaborate with Art Tower Mito (ATM) works to develop new products distinctive to Mito City. In 2006, the products developed were "choco-natto" (chocolate and fermented soybeans) and "chocohoshiimo" (chocolate and dried sweet potatoes), and in 2008, the cheese-and-natto combination "Nattchii." This time, Omiyage Project No.4 aims to come up with another new specialty product for the community in collaboration with local companies.

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