Tsuyoshi Maekawa: In Commemoration of the Publication of MAEKAWA and MAEKAWA II

2017.9.5 [tue] - 9.30 [sat] 11:00am - 7:00pm (Saturdays: 11:00am - 5:00pm) Closed on Sundays, Mondays, and holidays

ARTCOURT Gallery would like to announce a solo exhibition by the major Gutai Art Association artist Tsuyoshi Maekawa (1936 – ).

This exhibition has been planned both to commemorate the publication of two monographs focusing on the activities of Tsuyoshi Maekawa during the 1960s and 1970s – MAEKAWA (2014) and MAEKAWA II (2016) – and to convey the appeal of this artist’s work once again from his native Kansai. A contemporary artist who has been gaining recognition in recent years in the international art scene, Tsuyoshi Maekawa will be presented in this exhibition by way of a three-part composition: early-period works from the 1950s (before joining Gutai), pieces from the 1970s (before and after the dissolution of Gutai), and new works from 2017.

Maekawa first participated in the Gutai Art Exhibition at its eighth installment in 1959, and became an active member of the group in 1962. During his Gutai period in the 1960s, Maekawa became known for painting works that used powerfully protruding forms of rough-textured burlap as support media. Developing such free-ranging ideas as the pasting together of fabric, string and rope, his creativity continued to deepen, and he gained notice as a central artist of the second generation of Gutai. In the 1970s, after the group’s dissolution, Maekawa made rapid progress, exploring the creation of new painting spaces with a wide range of “sewing” techniques, and receiving numerous awards in Japan. As Maekawa says, “I am always interested in the new spaces that emerge as a result of the differences between materials and the ways of enclosure,” and for more than half a century, he has continued to delve into the challenges of realizing new expressions in painting.

Starting in 2016 and continuing into this year, Tate Modern held the collection exhibition “The Disappearing Figure: Art after Catastrophe”, which was followed by Saatchi Gallery’s large-scale solo exhibition of Maekawa’s work (both in London). Then, at the “Beyond Matter” exhibition (Gagosian, San Francisco), with its focus on Maekawa’s work during the 1960s and 1970s, new light was shed on both the work of Maekawa and that of his contemporaries Fontana and Castellani, and his ground-breaking explorations were presented and acknowledged in a global context. Furthermore, with his ongoing engagement in a variety of events in the Asian region, including solo, group and collection exhibitions, Maekawa has continued to broaden the scope of his activities in recent years and has been receiving greater recognition then ever before.

ARTCOURT Gallery is taking this opportunity to compile and publish Japanese-language booklets containing translations of the written contents of MAEKAWA and MAEKAWA II, and an event will be held during this exhibition to commemorate the publication of these volumes. As we would like Maekawa’s work to be seen by a large number of people, we would very much appreciate your participation and assistance in spreading news of this exhibition.

Related events

  • 9.16 [sat] 2:30pm - 4:00pm
    Artist Talk [Shōichi Hirai (curator, The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto) and Tsuyoshi Maekawa]
  • 9.16 [sat] 4:00pm - 5:00pm

  • *Free admission, but RSVP required for the Artist Talk (Please contact or 06-6354-5444)


Tsuyoshi Maekawa