Current Exhibitions in Tokyo

As Autumn weather is quickening its pace, I find myself wanting to spend more time indoors. Whether it's at home, in a cafe, or a movie theater, I just want to be cozy and inside. One of my favorite things to do in Tokyo is to attend art exhibitions regardless of genre, and surprise! They're all set indoors. Here are some interesting exhibitions on show right now in Tokyo:

Taken from Mori Art Museum

2018.10.06 - 2019.01.20

"Hsu Chia-Wei employs visually stunning videos and installations to depict complex stories not found in official Asian histories. These narratives, based on meticulous research, illuminate the histories of individuals tossed on turbulent political and social tides, and fragments of history hitherto neglected or missing from conventional accounts."

The exhibit exposes the story of a spy living on the Thai-Burmese border during the Cold War, or the colonial government set up in Taiwan by the Japanese Empire. The aim is to reintroduce regional memories that were lost while also reminding us that our respective histories are diverse.

  • Chronicle Kyoto 1990's - Diamonds are Forever, Art Scape, And I Dance with Somebody, Mori Art Museum

Taken from Mori Art Museum

2018.10.06 - 2019.01.20

"In 1990s Kyoto, particularly Sakyo-ku, art, activism and club culture coexisted in an uninhibited outpouring of creative activity, courtesy of a large number of diverse communities that formed loosely around Dumb Type and other Kyoto City University of Arts alumni, from contemporary art to “DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER” drag parties; the APP (AIDS Poster Project) that carried out HIV/AIDS education, activities that questioned conventional notions of sexuality, and Art-Scape, which served as a base for a variety of activities. The catchphrase “And I Dance with Somebody” from the acronym AIDS was conceived by APP for the “X International AIDS Conference, 1994.” ​

As topics surrounding gender, sexuality, and culture slowly but surely infiltrate mainstream discussions, it is important to revisit why it exists in the first place. This exhibit is mainly comprised of photos depicting the LGBTQ+ scene as well as the fight against AIDS in Kyoto

Taken from Tokyo Metropolitan Teien Art Museum

2018.10.06 - 2019.01.14

"What kind of formative aspects of these distant lands did the artists and designers of the time direct their attention to? It was indeed the field of fashion that had been the first to turn its eyes to their value. Jacques Doucet, recognized as one of the most prominent fashion designers in Paris was a patron for avant-garde artists like Picasso, yet at the same time had sought innovative value in the formative elements of African art."

Highlighting the orientalist fascination of Western artists particularly during the height of Art Deco, this exhibit displays 85 pieces that drew inspiration from African and Asian cultures and fashions. 

Taken from Hara Museum

2018.09.16 - 2018.12.24

"One day, even wishful thinking becomes obsolete. This day has come already. Probably it was the day when we last danced to a pop song from the radio. At least, deep in our heart, we were dancing and we were deeply touched. After the weeping or laughing, it’s gone. Obsoleteness might fade away but something has gone too. Don’t you wish?" - Lee Kit

Taipei based contemporary artist Lee Kit uses entire installation spaces for his exhibits, showcasing his wide skill set. He uses paintings, videos, light projections, and everything in between to put on a show. In this exhibit, the artist finds himself asking existential questions and his own perceptions of the world.