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Artists

Saburo Murakami

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Selected Chronology・Major Exhibitions

1925
Born in Kobe (June 27).
1943
Enters a prep course at Kwansei Gakuin University. Joins the school painting club, Gengetsu-kai.
Studies with Hiroshi Kanbara and starts oil painting.
1944
Begins working at the Mukogawa factory of Kubota Iron Works as part of the war effort.
1945
Joins the Tottori 40th Infantry Regiment. Later transferred to Takanabe, South Kyūshū.
The Second World War ends (August 15).
1947
Readmitted to Kwansei Gakuin University (under the old education system), where he enters the philosophy department (graduates in ’48).
Around this time, adopts the pen name “Murakami-Hiko.”
1949
Begins studying with Itō Tsugurō.
1951
Enters the aesthetics department at Kwansei Gakuin University Graduate School (under the old education system).
1952
5th Ashiya City Exhibition, Buddhist Hall, Ashiya, Hyōgo. Participates in every exhibition until the 47th Exhibition in ’94.
Around this time, along with Akira Kanayama, Kazuo Shiraga, and Atsuko Tanaka, Murakami joins the Zero Society (Zero-kai), a radical
faction of the Shinseisaku Art Society.
1954
Two-person show: Murakami-Hiko / Shiraga Kazuo, European Painting Gallery, Hankyū Department Store, Osaka.
––– Meets Jirō Yoshihara for the first time at this event.
Zero Society Exhibition, show windows, Sogō Department Store, Osaka.
––– Shows ‘Throwing Ball Painting’, made by throwing a paint-covered ball at the face of the painting.
1955
Around this time, joins Gutai Art Association.
Experimental Outdoor Exhibition of Modern Art to Challenge the Midsummer Sun, Ashiya Park, Hyōgo
––– Shows a work in which Murakami tore apart a piece of asphalt roofing as he ran across it, and other works.
1st Gutai Art Exhibition, Ohara Hall, Tokyo.
––– Produces ‘Paper-Breaking’ for the first time, and shows works such as ‘Six Holes’ and ‘Entrance.’ ‘Entrance’ was performed by
Jirō Yoshihara.
Begins a lifelong involvement in children’s art education at various kindergartens in Itami, Nishinomiya, and Osaka.
1956
6th Kansai Art Exhibition, Osaka City Museum of Fine Arts.
Shows ‘Work (Please Sit Down)’, commissioned by the painting division of the exhibition, and arouses controversy.
Shinkō Independent Exhibition, 3rd floor hall, Shinkō Shinbun newspaper office, Kōbe, Hyōgo.
––– Shows ‘Box’, a work made by placing a wall clock inside a wooden box.
9th Ashiya City Exhibition, Seidō Elementary School, Ashiya, Hyōgo. –– Shows ‘Air.’
Outdoor Gutai Art Exhibition, Ashiya Park, Hyōgo –– Shows ‘All Landscapes’ and ‘Sky.’
2nd Gutai Art Exhibition, Ohara Hall, Tokyo –– Shows ‘Passage’ (‘Paper-breaking’).
1957
3rd Gutai Art Exhibition, Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art.
––– Shows works such as a painting made by placing a canvas heaped with paint facedown overnight, and a large painting with a surface of
paint that continues to crumble off, depending on the changing state of the paint and glue.
Gutai Art on the Stage, Sankei Hall, Osaka/ Sankei Hall, Tokyo.
––– Presents a performance, ‘Confronting Screens’, in which Murakami destroys panels of stretched paper using his hands, feet and a stick.
1958
International Art of a New Era: Informel and Gutai, 3rd floor hall, Takashimaya Department Store, Osaka (exhibition travels to 4 other cities).
The Gutai Group Exhibition / 6th Gutai Art Exhibition, Martha Jackson Gallery, New York (exhibition travels to 4 other American cities).
From around this time, produces many paintings using vigorous brushstrokes until the early ’60s.
1959
8th Gutai Art Exhibition, Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art/ Ohara Hall, Tokyo.
––– Shows paintings with canvases attached to the face of the work.
1963
Solo exhibition, Gutai Pinacotheca, Osaka.
––– Shows 21 works, including paintings with wooden frames attached to the face of the work, and paintings with protrusions of plaster.
1964
14th Gutai Art Exhibition, 3rd floor hall, Takashimaya Department Store, Osaka.
1965
15th Gutai Art Exhibition, Gutai Pinacotheca, Osaka.
1968
20th Gutai Art Exhibition, Gutai Pinacotheca, Osaka.
––– Shows works made by attaching paper to a canvas and tracing its outline.
1969
Gutai Art Small Works Exhibition, Gutai Pinacotheca, Osaka.
1971
Saburo Murakami “Box” (Hako) One-Man Show, Mori’s Form, Osaka.
Around this time, submits letter of resignation to Gutai Art Association which is subsequently rejected.
1972
Gutai Art Association dissolved (March 31).
1973
Murakami Saburo Solo Exhibition / ‘Wooden Clappers’ (Hyōshigi), Gallery Shunjūkan, Osaka.
Murakami Saburo Exhibition / ‘Silence’ (Mugon), Mugensha, Osaka.
1974
Murakami Saburo Exhibition / ‘Water’ (Mizu), Shinanobashi Gallery Apron, Osaka.
Murakami Saburo Exhibition / ‘Lines’ (Suji), Shinanobashi Gallery Apron, Osaka.
1975
Murakami Saburo Kakikuke Solo Show (Kakikuke koten), Gallery Seiwa, Osaka.
1976
Murakami Saburo Exhibition / ‘Floor’ (Yuka), Shinanobashi Gallery Apron, Osaka.
1977
Murakami Saburo Exhibition: Displeasure by the Principle of Identity (Jidōritsu no fukai), Galerie Kitano Circus, Kōbe, Hyōgo.
1979
Jirō Yoshihara and Today’s Aspects of the Gutai, Hyōgo Prefectural Museum of Modern Art.
1986
Group Gutai: Action and Painting, Hyōgo Prefectural Museum of Modern Art (exhibition travels to Madrid and Belgrade).
Japon des Avant-gardes 1910-1970, Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris.
1990
Giappone all’avangardia: Il Gruppo Gutai negli anni Cinquanta, Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna, Rome.
1991
Gutai: Japanische Avantgarde / Japanese Avant-Garde 1954-1965, Mathildenhöhe Darmstadt.
1992
Gutai I: 1954–1958, Ashiya City Museum of Art & History, Hyōgo. (Gutai II and III were held in 1993)
Revived Outdoor Exhibition, Ashiya Park, Hyōgo (planned in conjunction with Gutai I).
1993
Passagio ad Oriente, La Biennale di Venezia: XLV Esposizione Internazionale d’Arte, Venice.
Gutaï…suite?, Palais des arts, Toulouse.
––– Presents ‘Exit’, in which Murakami breaks through tissue paper.
Gutai 1955/56: A Restarting Point for Japanese Contemporary Art, Penrose Institute of Contemporary Arts, Tokyo/ Kirin Plaza, Osaka.
MUSIC / every sound includes music, Xebec Foyer, Kōbe, Hyōgo.
1994
Japanese Art After 1945: Scream Against the Sky, Guggenheim Museum SoHo, New York and other venues.
Hors Limites: L’arte et la vie 1952-1994, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris.
––– The museum acquires ‘Passage’, which was shown in the exhibition.
One Day Museum: Feeling from Seeing, Kawanishi City Hall, Hyōgo.
––– Presents ‘Exit’, which becomes his last performance.
1996
Stumbles in front of his house before dawn and is rushed to the hospital (January 6).
Dies of a cerebral contusion at the age of 70 (January 11).
Saburo Murakami Exhibition, Ashiya City Museum of Art & History, Hyōgo.
1998
Out of Actions: Between Performance and the Object 1949‒1979, The Geffen Contemporary at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles/
Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, and other venues.
1999
Gutaï, Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume, Paris.
2001
Le Tribù dell’ Arte, Galleria Comunale d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Rome.
2003
Saburo Murakami, Gallery Kuranuki, Osaka
2004
Gutai Retrospective, Hyōgo Prefectural Museum of Art.
Traces: Body and Idea in Contemporary Art, The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto/ The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo
2006
ZERO: Internationale Künstler-Avantgarde der 50er/60er Jahre, Museum Kunst Palast, Düsseldorf/ Musée d’Art Moderne de Saint-Étienne
Métropole
2007
Artempo: Where Time Becomes Art, Palazzo Fortuny, Venice.
2009
Fare Mondi, La Biennale di Venezia: 53a Esposizione Internationale d’ Arte, Venice.
2010
Gutai: Dipingere con il tempo e lo spazio, Museo Cantonale d’Arte, Lugano, Parco Villa Ciani, Lugano.
2011
Saburo Murakami: Focus on the 70s, ARTCOURT Gallery, Osaka.
2012
Gutai: The Spirit of an Era, The National Art Center, Tokyo.
Destroy the Picture: Painting the Void, 1949-1962, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles/ The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago
TOKYO 1955-1970:A New Avant-Garde, The Museum of Modern Art, New York.
2013
Parallel Views: Italian and Japanese Art from the 1950s, 60s, and 70s, The Warehouse, Rachofsky Collection, Dallas.
Gutai: Splendid Playground, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.
2014
Saburo Murakami, ARTCOURT Gallery, Osaka
2016
Performing for the Camera, Tate Modern, London.
––– Six continous photographs of ‘Passage’ (2nd Gutai Art Exhibition, 1956) taken by Kiyoji Otsuji shown.
The Emergence of Contemporary: Avant-garde Art in Japan, 1950-1970, Paço Imperial, Rio de Janeiro.
A Feverish Era: Art Informel and the Expansion of Japanese Artistic Expression in the 1950s and ’60s, The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto.
New Beginnings: Between Gesture and Geometry, The George Economou Collection, Athens.
A Feverish Era in Japanese Art, Palais de Beaux-Arts, Brussels.
2017
Japanese Art of the 1950s: Starting Point after the War, The Museum of Modern Art, Hayama.
Saburo Murakami, ARTCOURTGallery, Osaka
Saburo Murakami Retrospective, Axel Vervoordt Gallery, Antwerp

Major Public Collections

Ashiya City Museum of Art & History/ Osaka City Museum of Modern Art/ Kitakyūshū Municipal Museum of Art/ The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto/ The National Museum of Art, Osaka/ Chiba City Museum of Art/ Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo/ Ōtani Memorial Art Museum, Nishinomiya City/ Hyōgo Prefectural Museum of Art/ Fuchū Art Museum/ The Miyagi Museum of Art/ Axel and May Vervoordt Foundation, Wijnegem/ Guggenheim Abu Dhabi/ The Art Institute of Chicago/ The George Economou Collection, Athens/ The Museum of Modern Art, New York/ Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris/ M+, Hong Kong/ Rachofsky Collection, Dallas.

Publications

Murakami Saburo:Through the '70s   More details

ACG Exhibition

Saburo Murakami

2017 ARTCOURT Gallery

Saburo Murakami

2014 ARTCOURT Gallery
Saburo MurakamiSaburo MurakamiSaburo Murakami

Saburo Murakami : Focus on the 70s

2011 ARTCOURT Gallery
Saburo Murakami : Focus on the 70sSaburo Murakami : Focus on the 70sSaburo Murakami : Focus on the 70s

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