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La Maison de rendez-vous
Kishin Shinoyama ”La Maison de rendez-vous” (2016) ©Kishin Shinoyama 2016

Kishin Shinoyama »

La Maison de rendez-vous

Exhibition: – 9 Jan 2017

Hara Museum of Contemporary Art

4-7-25 Kitashinagawa, Shinagawa-ku
140-0001 Tokyo



Tue-Sun 11-5

La Maison de rendez-vous
Kishin Shinoyama ”La Maison de rendez-vous” (2016) ©Kishin Shinoyama 2016

The museum, a morgue for artworks,
filled with the stench of death where naked beauties gather day by day.
Where all manner of pleasures unfold--wild dancing, wandering, derangement, delight, frenzy, debauchery...
A place of dreams and intoxication where phantom butterfiles dance.
Here a festival begins one early-autumn evening and ends one midwinter morning.
A riotous party, a one-time affair lasting a little more than four months.
An affair not to be missed.

2016 Kishin Shinoyama

The Hara Museum will hold a solo exhibition by Kishin Shinoyama, a photographer who has remained at the forefront of his field since the 1960s. Shinoyama currently has an ongoing exhibition, THE PEOPLE by KISHIN, touring museums throughout Japan since 2012. The exhibition at the Hara Museum, however, will be based on a completely different concept and will appear only at the Hara Museum.
For its theme, Shinoyama will use the power of his camera to transform the museum, a former private residence completed in 1938, into "la maison de rendez-vous." All works will be created specifically for the show with some 30 different nude models as their subject. All shooting will be done on location at the Hara Museum. The result will be a fantasy world of intoxicating beauty that arises from the melding of actual space with photographic space.

La Maison de rendez-vous
Kishin Shinoyama ”La Maison de rendez-vous” (2016) ©Kishin Shinoyama 2016

The Novelty of the "Here" as a Photo Exhibition
Once the decision was made to hold a solo exhibition at the Hara Museum, Kishin Shinoyama presented his plan to take and return (i.e., show) the photos "here" (=the Hara Museum). Generally speaking, photo exhibition display works that have been taken "elsewhere" (i.e., other than the exhibition venue). This exhibition would be different. All works would be shot "here" (i.e., the Hara Museum), with some later hung on the wall which appears in the photos themselves.Viewers are thus invited to experience a fantasy-like (one might even say "perverted") mingling of images in the photos (i.e., the previous "here" where the image existed) with the actual space of the exhibition venue (i.e., the present "here" where the image is displayed).

A "Maison de rendez-vous" Created by Kishin Shinoyama
Examples of nude photography appeared so soon after the invention of the medium (during the first half of the 19th century) that the history of nude photography may as well be equated with the history of photography itself. It touches upon the very essence of the photo and is one of the reasons people find the medium so captivating. Since his graduation project for the College of Art at Nihon University, Kishin Shinoyama has continued to shoot great volumes of nude photography and to explore the expressive potential of "human nakedness." For the current exhibition, in order to create "la maison de rendez-vous" with the museum as a platform, Shinoyama made the nude the subject of every photo.

The photographer spoke of being intrigued with the Hara Museum as a place that arouses the desire to shoot, as a place where one can become lost in the pleasure of shooting. He made bold use of the time the museum was closed between exhibits to photograph his models non-stop as they stood, sat, stretched out, leaped and danced at every imaginable place within the museum. These included galleries devoid of artwork; the stairwell, which looks as it did when the building was just completed (1938); the gardens piled high with fallen leaves; the normally closed-off rooftops; and the spaces inhabited by the museum's iconic permanent installations. In Shinoyama's "la maison de rendez-vous," space serves not merely as background to the body, it constitutes a world of dense imagery spun off by the melding of body and space. By altering each of the museum's five galleries in different ways, Shinoyama has created a multi-layered world in which to experience "la maison de rendez-vous."

Artist Profile
Born in Tokyo in 1940, Shinoyama began working in the photography division of the Japanese advertising agency Light Publicity while still a student of photography at the College of Art, Nihon University. He came into the limelight in 1961when he received the APA Award in the open submission category of the annual show sponsored by the Japan Advertising Photographer's Association. In 1968, he left Light Publicity to launch what would become a lifelong career as a freelance photographer. In 1976, he represented Japan at the 37th Venice Biennale with a solo exhibition on the theme of "family" in the Japan Pavilion (it was the first time a solo exhibition format was adopted by the Japanese representative). Shinoyama is still active today as one of Japan's most well-known photographers and is a recipient of many awards. These include the New Artist Award in 1966, the Annual Award of the Photographic Society of Japan in 1970, the Art Encouragement Prizes for New Artists from the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology in 1972, the Kodansha Culture Award in 1973, the Mainichi Art Award in 1979 and the Domestic Photographer Award at the Higashikawa International Photo Festival in 1986.