Kozo Nishino: Walking in the Sky
2020. 1.11 [sat] − 3.14 [sat]
ARTCOURT Gallery is pleased to present Walking in the Sky, a solo exhibition of new works by sculptor Kozo Nishino. With titanium and stainless steel, Kozo Nishino (1951-) has been using delicate yet dynamic sculptural expression to create unique natural landscapes. This exhibition will show new works of his trussed structures such as Spanning Space 2020, a ring measuring 7.2 meters in diameter afloat in midair, and Walking in the Sky, an approximately 10 meter long horizontal bridge that will float at the viewers’ feet, which together will create a space where one may picture themselves walking through the air.
Revolving around themes of natural phenomena like that of the wind and the sky, Nishino has had an artistic career since the mid-1980s, focusing on large-scale sculptures that show expanses of time-space through structural beauty with subdued volume. Not at the mercy of the contemporary trends, Nishino waits for what naturally wells out from within, and uses his feelings of yearning for and awe of the sky and outer space as a starting point that is then incorporated into his work. The sky continues to be a strong presence for him as a large source of inspiration. An experience in his boyhood that left him feeling as if he had been engulfed by the sky, the sight of the sky as the sun is setting, or the view from an airplane flying above the clouds; these “memories of the sky” that Nishino has within him became the outline for his works, shown in each and every line of metal he has drawn in subtle curves.
Furthermore, one of Nishino’s most representative motifs is the ring as an image of infinity, which he has dealt with in his work across many years. Drawn in an arc starting at the fulcrum, the lines that become more and more detailed as they approach the tip and reach the extremity seem to continue on to melt into their surrounding landscape, connecting the gaze and consciousness towards the grandeur of the sky. Nishino’s sculptures, with their organic movements that play along with nature and keep their own unique sense of time, are all created through a delicate sense of handiwork without using blueprints. Even now as an accomplished artist, he is engrossed discovering ways of improving and new joys in the act of creating.
When speaking about his work Sky Memory*1 installed at 4 World Trade Center building in the summer of 2013, Nishino described later on how he “had the sense that the work itself, with its floating appearance, had become the sky—and that sky was gazing down at us, or at the very least, at me.”*2 The “memory of the sky” inherent in his work from around this point “also represents humans living in the embrace of something greater”*3 and has come to express the preciousness and warmth that dwells in people. Now, how will we be able to experience what Nishino will show us as “walking in the sky”?
A number of works from his series using the motif of musical instruments, produced from 1986 to 1994 while garnering a wide response and much attention, will also be exhibited for the first time in 30 years. Evidence of his rapid development shortly after, the endeavors leading up to his large-scale works can already be seen in these pieces. We hope to draw your attention to the work of Kozo Nishino.
*1: Kozo Nishino, Sky Memory, 2009-2013, titanium alloy, 30 m diameter | A public artwork installed in the entrance lobby to 4 World Trade Center (designed by Fumihiko Maki) constructed across from the 9/11 Memorial in New York.
Believing that the sky has the power to console people’s hearts, this installation was made with hopes for a future where this tremulous world could go beyond borders to become one, consisting of two arcs measuring 30 meters in diameter mirrored in a wall of polished black granite appearing as one great circle.
*2, 3: Kozo Nishino interview by Emi Ohashi
LIXIL ART NEWS No. 360 Kozo Nishino: Space Memory, 2014、LIXIL GALLERY, Tokyo
- 1.25 [sat] 3:00 - 4:00pm
Artist Talk [Tadashi Kobayashi (Hyogo Prefectural Museum of Art) & Kozo Nishino]
*RSVP required for the Artist Talk (Email email@example.com/ call +81-6-6354-5444)
- 1.25 [sat] 4:00 - 5:00pm