Hiroshi Sugimoto: History of History Opening in June 2007 Inaugural Show in the ICC's New Gallery

ROM Magazine, Summer 2007 | Go to article overview

Hiroshi Sugimoto: History of History Opening in June 2007 Inaugural Show in the ICC's New Gallery


Hiroshi Sugimoto: History of History Opening in June 2007 Inaugural show in the ICC's new gallery

Matching the drama of the Institute for Contemporary Culture's new gallery space atop the Michael Lee-Chin Crystal is its inaugural exhibition Hiroshi Sugimoto: History of History. The show, curated by artist Hiroshi Sugimoto, spans time and history with more than 50 artworks, including contemporary photographs by Sugimoto, beautiful historical Asian artifacts, and unique natural specimens from the artist's personal collection.

"Mr. Sugimoto's serene artworks link the historic and the contemporary, a theme that speaks to the Institute for Contemporary Culture's (ICC) role within the Museum," says William Thorsell, ROM director and CEO, of the ICC's unique contemporary forum at the Museum. "The ICC's new space will provide an impressive venue for this remarkable exhibition." In fact, Sugimoto was so inspired by the ROM's new architecture that he has revised his installation specifically for the ICC's gallery, to provide a "conversation" with architect Daniel Libeskind's vision. He has also created new work especially for this show.

Born in Tokyo in 1948, Sugimoto moved to New York City in the 1970s, where he became a dealer and collector of Japanese and East Asian art while working as an artist. Well known for his series of seascape photographs, natural history dioramas, and wax-museum figures, Sugimoto has been hailed as a star by the Washington Post.

Within the ICC gallery's sloping walls, under its cathedral ceilings, Sugimoto's presentation spans millions of years. Reflecting both art and architecture, past and present, the installation--co-organized by Japan Society (New York) and the Freer Gallery of Art & Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution (Washington, D.C.)--investigates how time is perceived and represented.

The centrepiece of the gallery, a high wall that curves through the space, displays 13th- to 18th-century Asian hanging scrolls, mandalas (symbolic circular figures representing the universe), Sutras (Buddhist scriptures), and works on paper and silk.

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