When it comes to Japan’s contemporary art scene, Jiro Takamatsu’s name is never too far from mention. As well as founding the radical Hi-Red Center – an artist collective known for their satirical and humorous performances that mocked authorities in Tokyo and once called Yoko Ono a member – his sculptures, drawing and archive materials live inside institutions from the Tate to the Guggenheim.
Yet despite being one of the leading post-war artists, Takamatsu is little-known outside Japan. That will change in the UK this summer though, as his first solo exhibition takes place at the Henry Moore Foundation. The Foundation’s Director, Godfrey Worsdale, says, “Takamatsu brought sculpture into people’s daily lives. His work interrogates the way we understand the world, and has resonance with many artists working today.”
Bringing together more than 50 works from collections across Japan, USA and Europe, The Temperature of Sculpture will trace Takamatsu’s artistic practice through his early career in the ’60s and ’70s to today. Throughout that time, he’s been interested in the nature of perception and the possibilities of sculpture. Sometimes his materials consist of everyday objects (bottles, cloth, stones and furniture), while at other times they have a strong association to very traditional mediums (marble and stone). All in all, Takamatsu’s body of work brings to light how important the radical art of Japan during the 60s and 70s was to sculpture today.
Jiro Takamatsu: The Temperature of Sculpture runs from 13 July to 22 October at Henry Moore Institute. henry-moore.org