The Birth of Seeing Tomoko Konoike

 Tomoko Konoike’s “The Birth of Seeing” here in Shizuoka began with a push deep into the dense hills extending behind Rodin Hall in search of an “escape route” from the museum.

 Konoike uses a variety of familiar media, travelling to create her works alongside specific landscapes or seasons. Through her work, has consistently questioned the fundamentals of art with her own two feet. “The Birth of Seeing” is a phrase coined by Konoike to express the wonder of encountering the world as a newborn body. Her audience “sees” not just in the visual sense, but with their hands, noses, ears, and through gravitation and breathing to awaken their dormant senses. In this exhibition, a small path has in fact been prepared in the hills, where the physicality and imagination of the audience are harnessed to open a new passage between the rigid architecture of the museum and the estranged natural world.
 Additionally, Konoike has had support from other people, as in the works from the “Kinyokai” painting club at the National Sanatorium Kikuchi Keifuen or the “Storytelling Table Runner”, which was handcrafted together with many others, and from non-human creative forces, as in “Animal Droppings”. These works allow for a rich dialogue with the museum collection.  

 The values which up until now, art has presented from a privileged position, and the resulting structure of cultural and economic globalism, are now facing a critical turning point along with global issues. In this exhibition, the baton is passed from the previous venue, the Takamatsu Art Museum, to here in Shizuoka, where it will undergo further transformations. Art is always fluctuating; stretching and somersaulting, in order to survive. To be alive means that time, light, and everything else are different for everyone. Even the audience are more than just human.

Tomoko Konoike
Organized by
Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art/Shizuoka Shimbun・Shizuoka Broadcasting System Co., Ltd.
Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art

Photo : Satoshi Nagare(sent by Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art)

©2023 Tomoko Konoike/Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art、©“Kinyokai” painting club at the National Sanatorium Kikuchi Keifuen(Unauthorized transcription, reprinting, or reproduction of the exhibited works on the archive page and in the video is prohibited.)