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Socially Engaged Art in Japan


University of Washington University District
Nov. 12-14 2015


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This three-day symposium explores the intersection of art and culture through the lens of Japanese turmoil and artistic intervention. What can artwork that is 'socially informed' do, in a practical sense? How does it affect the quality and intellectual weight of the piece? What is art's place in a community that is rebuilding itself?

With notable keynotes like Fram Kitagawa (General Director of the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale and the Setouchi Triennale, two of the largest art events in Japan) and Sharon Daniel (Artist, Professor of Film & Digital Media at UC Santa Cruz), this symposium promises a deep and thorough investigation of this pressing contemporary issue. All events are free, but registration is required.

Below is the complete list of events:


7:00 Keynote Address by Fram Kitagawa (Henry Art Gallery Auditorium)
"Art in the Age of the Global Environment"


9:00-9:30 Opening remarks by Justin Jesty (HUB 332)

9:30-12:00 Panel 1: Arts Policy and Institutions (HUB 332)

Kawashima Nobuko (Professor, Dōshisha University, Economics)
"Development of Socially Engaged Art in Japan—Policy and Economic Perspectives"

Kuresawa Takemi (Assistant Professor, Tokyo University of Technology)
"The System of Contemporary Art Over the Past 20 Years in Japan"

Yoshimoto Mitsuhiro (Director of Center for Arts and Culture, NLI Research Institute)
"Cultural and Economic Revitalization in Japan's Small- and Mid-Sized Cities"

Sasha Su-Ling Welland (Associate Professor, University of Washington, Depts. of Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies, and Anthropology)

12:00-1:00 Lunch

1:00-3:30 Panel 2: Aesthetics (HUB 332)

Adrian Favell (Chair in Sociology and Social Theory at the University of Leeds)
"Sociology and Social Aesthetics: Japan as a Source of New Art Theory and Practice"

Kumakura Sumiko (Professor, Tokyo University of the Arts, Dept. of Musical Creativity and the Environment)
"Participation and Delusion: Example of the Sun Self Hotel"

Justin Jesty (Assistant Professor, University of Washington, Dept. of Asian Languages and Literature)
"Thoughts on Conviviality and Hospitality"

Adair Rounthwaite (Assistant Professor, University of Washington, School of Art + Art History + Design)

4:00 Artist's Talk with Tanaka Koki (The Jacob Lawrence Gallery)

7:30 Keynote Address by Sharon Daniel (Kane Hall, 220)
“On Politics and Aesthetics”


9:00-11:30 Panel 3: Works (HUB 332)

Ueda Kanayo (Founder and head of the Cocoroom; researcher at Osaka City University Urban Research Plaza)
"To Express is to Live: What Slips Between Isolation and Neighboring Relation in Osaka's Kamagasaki"

Sumitomo Fumihiko (Director of Arts Maebashi; co-founder Art Initiative Tokyo) "Art Projects as the Post Avant-Garde: The Experiment of Arts Maebashi"

Michael Swaine (Assistant Professor, University of Washington, School of Art + Art History + Design) "Matter in Action"

Xiaojin Wu (Curator of Japanese and Korean Art, Seattle Art Museum) Discussant

11:30-12:30 Lunch

12:30-3:00 Panel 4: Interventions (HUB 332)

William Marotti (Associate Professor, UCLA, History)
"Dramatizing the Space of Shinjuku, 1968: happening, event, riot, stimulation"

Reiko Tomii (Independent scholar based in NY)
"Vanishing as a Radical Thought: Matsuzawa Yutaka and the “Post-Nirvana” Commune"

Mori Yoshitaka (Professor, Tokyo University of the Arts, Department of Musical Creativity and the Environment)
"Art and Censorship in Japan's 2010s"

Tad Hirsch (Assistant Professor, University of Washington, School of Art + Art History + Design)

3:00-3:30 Break

3:30-6:00 Panel 5: 3/11 (HUB 332)

Miwako Tezuka (Independent Curator)
"The Whispering Star: Sono Shion and Chim↑Pom"

Igarashi Taro (Professor, Tōhoku University, Architecture Criticism and History)
"Relational Architecture"

Takehisa Yu (Curator, Art Tower Mito)
"After the exhibition Artists and the Disaster – Documentation in Progress"

Marilyn Ivy (Professor, Columbia University, Anthropology)

University of Washington

University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195

Event Times
This event is in the past.
  • Nov. 12-14 2015