The 2010 saw some cross-media shows examining Japanese contemporary art in terms of its craft aesthetics - Noe-Orientalism from Japanese Contemporary art and its architectural aesthetics - Where is architecture? Seven Installations by Japanese architects. Among the galleries presenting contemporary art the most interesting shows were held in Taka Ishii Gallery of Naoya Hatakeyama who with a scientific zeal examines Tokyo cityscape, Hiromiyoshii which displayed maquettes by more than a dozen young architects, Mizuma Art Gallery which showed three-by-seven-meter painting of a mound of dead Japanese businessmen and office appliciencies by Aido Makoto and Edo-era inspired ink drawings by Akira Yamaguchi while at Misako&Rosen Yuki Okumura displayed videos of rakugo actor retelling a classical Japanese story.
Yuki Okumura, Anatomy Fiction, video, 2010
Privately run museums often stage city's best exhibitions and so the Mori Art Musuem held third of its triennial surveys of Japanese artist Roppongi Crossing 2010: Can there be art?, Watari Musuem of Contemporary Art celebrated its 20th year with solo exhibition of multimedia artist Tam Ochiai and architect Sou Fujimoto while Hara Museum of Contemporary Art presented first solo show in Japan of Chinese artist Yang Fudong.
Outside Tokyo to the West, Hiroshima City Musuem of Contemporary Art presented More of an Activity: The Artist as Choreographer and to the North, 21st Centuary Musuem of Contemporary Art Kanazawa held a larg exhibition of multimedia artist Tadasu Takamine which then traveled to Yokohama.
Tadasu Takamine, Melody Cup, 2009
photo: Takezaki Hiroto
In addition to the proliferation of the architectural shows at home, it was a big year for Japanese architects abroad. Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa of SANAA were awarded the Pritzker, architectural Nobel. Sejima was also the first femal and Asian director of Venice Architectural Biennale, where Junya Ishigami received a Golden Lion.
The post is based on the Ashley Rawlings report for ArtAsiaPacific Almanac 2011