Home > ARAKAWA (1936-2010)


ARAKAWA (1936-2010)


I am looking for a new definition of perfection.

Choose everything.





Born in Japan on July 6



Arrived in New York



Began collaborating with Madeline Gins on the research project “The Mechanism of Meaning”



Founded Reversible Destiny Foundation (Formerly Containers of Mind Foundation) with Madeline Gins



Established Arakawa & Gins Tokyo office in Japan



Died in NY on May 19





Ohara Museum of Art Prize, 7th Contemporary Art Exhibition of Japan



National Museum of Modern Art Award, 9th International Art Exhibition of Japan



Best Prize, 8th Contemporary Art Exhibition of Japan



Awarded by the French Government: Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres



John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship



Belgian Critics’ Prize



World of Literary Prize from Shincho Foundation, Japan



College Art Association’s Artist Award for Exhibition of the Year/Distinguished Body of Work, Presentation or Performance Award



The highest award in the Rainbow Town Urban Design Competition goes to the Arakawa/Gins Chinju no Mori/Sensorium City (Tokyo Bay)



Shiju Housho – Medal with Purple Ribbon

Nihon Gendai Geijutsu Shinko Sho – Award for innovation in Japanese contemporary art from Japan Arts Foundation



The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette




“Arakawa and Gins: Architecture and Philosophy,” University of Paris X-Nanterre



“Reversible Destiny Declaration of the Right Not to Die: Second International Arakawa +Gins Architecture + Philosophy Conference/Congress,” University of Pennsylvania, Slought Foundation



AG3: The Third International Arakawa and Gins: Architecture and Philosophy Conference, Griffith University, Australia




Ubiquitous Site * Nagi’s Ryoanji *, Architectural Body, [Permanent Installation], Nagi MOCA, Nagi



Site of Reversible Destiny, Yoro, Gifu Prefecture [a seven acre site in central Japan]



Reversible Destiny Office, Yoro, Gifu Prefecture



External Genome Housing Project, Shidami, Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, Japan. (Completion Date, 2005)



Reversible Destiny Lofts Mitaka – In Memory of Helen Keller -, Tokyo, Japan



Bioscleave House, East Hampton, Long Island (Completion Date: April 2008)



Biotopological Scale-Juggling Escalator (Dover Street Market New York, COMME des GARCONS), New York, NY




Inauguration of an Arakawa room at the Nordrhein-Westfalen Museum, Dusseldorf


Selected One-Man Exhibitions


Muramatsu Gallery, Tokyo



Mudo Gallery, Tokyo



Galerie Schmela, Düsseldorf



Dwan Gallery, Los Angeles

Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels



Galerie Schmela, Düsseldorf

Minami Gallery, Tokyo

Galleria dell’Ariete, Milan



Wuttembergischer Kunstverein, Stuttgart

Dwan Gallery, New York and Los Angeles

Wide White Space, Antwerp

Galerie Schmela, Düsseldorf

Stedelijk van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven



Von der Heydt Museum, Wuppertal

Galleria Schwarz, Milan

Dwan Gallery, New York and Los Angeles



Dwan Gallery, New York

Galerie Lauter, Mannheim



Galerie Yvon Lambert, Paris

Dwan Gallery, New York

Galleria Schwarz, Milan

Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (film: Why Not)



Musée National d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, Paris

Hannover Kunstverein, Hannover

Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe

Venice XXXV Biennale



Harcus-Krakow Gallery, Boston

Galerie Yvon Lambert, Paris

Galeria Schwarz, Milan

Angela Flowers Gallery, London

ROSC Show, Dublin

Whitney Museum of American Art (Film: For Example)



Traveling Exhibition: The Mechanism of Meaning

Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt

Kunsthalle Hamburg, Hamburg

Kunsthalle Bern, Bern

Nationalgalerie Berlin, Berlin

Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus, Munich


Galerie Art in Progress, Zurich

Galleria La Bertesca, Genoa

Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York



Daytons Gallery 12, Minneapolis

Margot Leavin Gallery, Los Angeles



Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minneapolis

Galleria L’Uomo e L’Arte, Milano and Bergamo

Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York

Galerie Art in Progress, Munich

The Museum of Modern Art, New York



Galerie Art in Progress, Düsseldorf

Galerie Aronowitsch, Stockholm

Galerie Yvon Lambert, Paris

Sonja Henie-Onstad Kunstzentrum, Oslo

Michael Berger Gallery, Pittsburgh



Ronald Feldman Fine Arts and Multiples, Inc., New York

Galeria 42, Barcelona

Galerie Art in Progress, Munich



Städtische Kunsthalle, Düsseldorf

Galerie Maeght, Paris

Galerie Art in Progress, Düsseldorf



Gallery Takagi, Nagoya

Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam

Nationalgalerie, Berlin

Neue Galerie am Landesmuseum Johanneum, Graz

Margo Leavin Gallery, Los Angeles



The Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minneapolis

The Seibu Museum of Art, Tokyo

The National Museum of Art, Osaka

Stadtische Kunstsammlungen, Ludwigshafen



John C. Stoller & Co., Minneapolis

Gloria Luria Gallery, Palm Beach

Galerie Maeght, Zurich

Gallery Takagi, Nagoya



Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus, Munich

Kestner Gesellschaft, Hannover

The Arts Club of Chicago, Chicago



Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford

Galerie Yvon Lambert, Paris

Galerie Maeght, Paris



Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York

Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art, Kitakyushu



Padiglione d’Arte Contemporanea, Milan

The Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, Ridgefield



Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York

Arnold Herstand Gallery, New York



Gallery Blu, Milan

Satani Gallery, Tokyo



Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York

Von Straaten Gallery, Chicago

Galerie Yvon Lambert, Paris



Satani Gallery, Tokyo

The Seibu Museum of Art, Tokyo

The Museum of Modern Art, Seibu Takanawa, Nagano

Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York

Galerie Isy Brachot, Brussels



Touko Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo

Joseloff Gallery, West Hartford

daadgalerie, Berlin

Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York



The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo



The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto

Matsuzakaya Art Museum, Nagoya

Busche Galerie, Cologne



Busche Galerie, Berlin



Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo



Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf



Guggenheim Museum Soho, New York

Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York



NTT InterCommunication Center [ICC], Tokyo



Nagoya University of Arts, Art & Design Center, Nagoya



The Nagoya City Art Museum, Nagoya



Gallery Art Unlimited, Tokyo



National Museum of Art, Osaka

Kyoto Institute of Technology Museum and Archives, Kyoto

Sezon Museum of Modern Art, Nagano

Gallery Art Unlimited, Tokyo



Gallery Art Unlimited, Tokyo



Gallery Art Unlimited, Tokyo



Aizuyaichi Museum, Tokyo

The Museum of Modern Art, Saitama




Arakawa and Madeline Gins.  The Mechanism of Meaning (introduction by Lawrence Alloway).

Munich:  Bruckmann, 1971 (1st edition).  New York:  Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 1979 (2nd edition).  New York:  Abbeville Press, 1988 (3rd edition).


Arakawa and Madeline Gins.  For Example (A Critique of Never).  Milan:  Alessandra Castelli Press, 1974.


Arakawa and Madeline Gins.  To Not To Die.  Paris:  Editions de la Difference, 1987.


Arakawa and Madeline Gins.  ARCHITECTURE  Reversible Sites, Reversible Destiny (Architectural Experiments after Auschwitz-Hiroshima).  London:  Academy Editions, 1994


Reversible Destiny: We Have Decided Not to Die (Guggenheim Catalog)  (in collaboration with Madeline Gins).  New York: Abrams, Inc., 1997.


Architectural Body (in collaboration with Madeline Gins).  Tuscaloosa:  University of Alabama Press, 2002.


Le Corps Architectural (in collaboration with Madeline Gins). Paris: Editions Manucius, 2005.


Making Dying Illegal, Architecture Against Death:  Original to the 21st Century. (in collaboration with Madeline Gins).  New York: Roof Books.  (November, 2006)



“The Architectural Body – Landing Sites,” Space in America: Theory History Culture, (editors) Klaus Benesch and Kerstein Schmidt, Fall 2005.


“Gifu-Reversible Destiny” (in collaboration with Madeline Gins).  Architectural Design, Games of Architecture, 1996, pp. 27-35.


“Housing Complexity” (in collaboration with Madeline Gins).  Journal of Philosophy and the Visual Arts no. 6, Complexity, 1995, pp. 88-95.


“Landing Sites/The End of Spacetime.” Arakawa and Madeline Gins. Art and Design, May-June, 1993.


“Person as Site in Respect to a Tentative Constructed Plan.”  Arakawa and Madeline Gins. ANYWHERE, 1992, pp. 54-67.


“The Tentative Constructed Plan as Intervening Device (for a Reversible Destiny).”  Arakawa and Madeline Gins  A+U:  Architecture and Urbanism, December 1991, pp. 48-57.


Selected Articles & Reviews:

“Design Innovation House: Reversible Destiny Lofts.”  Archiworld, 2006.


Femke Bijlsma.  “Come Si Rovescia Il Destino.” Casa, May 2006.


Mari Hashimoto.  “How to Live in Reversible Destiny Lofts with Directions for Use.”  Casa Brutus, February 2006.


Yoshihio Sano.  “The trial to cross-over.”  Japan Architect, February 2006.


Lawrence B. Nagy.   “Parcours vita a domicile.” Monde, February 26, 2006


Tomoko Otake. “Home sweet ‘death-defying’condo homes.” The Japan Times, January 15, 2006


Kay Itoi.  “The Discomforts of Home.” Newsweek International, December 19, 2005


Arata Takahashi.  Interview with Arakawa.  “Innovator File. No. 45: Warning to the Pursuit of Functionality (Reversible Destiny Urban City Concept.” Innovative One, July 13, 2005


Takeshi Matsuda. “Closeup: Building a Residence with Tubes, Spheres and Cubes.” Nikkei Architecture, May 2, 2005


Joel David Robinson. “From Clockwork Bodies to Reversible Destinies (On the Architectural Experiments of Arakawa and Gins).” Art Papers, March/April 2005.


Lisa Licitra Ponti. “Arakawa + Gins. Living Bodies.”  Domus 879, March 2005.


Susan Stewart, “On the Art of the Future.” The Chicago Review, Winter 2004/2005.


Karen MacCormack.  “Mutual Labyrinth: A Proposal of Exchange.” Architectures of Poetry. Eds., Dworkin, Craig Douglas and Maria Eugenia Diaz Sanchez. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2004


Michel Delville.  “How Not to Die in Venice: The Art of Arakawa and Madeline Gins.” Architectures of Poetry. Eds., Dworkin, Craig Douglas and Maria Eugenia Diaz Sanchez. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2004


Michelle Delville. “How Not to Die in Venice: The Art of Arakawa and Madeline Gins” Reading the Illegible (Avant-Garde and Modernism Studies). (ed. by Craig Dworkin. Chicago: Northwestern University Press, 2003.)


Jean-Michel Rabate, ed. “Architecture Against Death Architecture” Interfaces (21-22) A + G Special Double Issue, Fall 2003.


David Kolb.  Review of Architectural Body.  Continental Philosophy Review, 2003.


Patrick Pardo. “Regarding the Lives of Human Snails:  Arakawa/Gins and the Architectural Body.” The Daily NY Arts Newsletter.  May 15, 2003, p.1.


Aaron Kunin.  “Stay Alive:  Gins and Arakawa vs. The Grim Reaper.”  The Village Voice, January 15 ? 21, 2003.


Joel David Robinson.  Review of Architectural Body. Parachute, April  5, 2003.


Geraldine McKenzie.  Review of Architectural Body.  How2, Spring 2003.


Jeff Byles.  “The Reversible Destiny: Architecture of Arakawa and Madeline Gins.”  Plazm 27, 2002.


Mary Ann Caws “Taking Textual Time” Reimagining Textuality: Textual Studies in the Late Age of Print.  ed. by Elizabeth Bergmann Loizeaux and Neil Fraistat.  Wisconsin: The University of Wisconsin Press, 2002.


Arthur C. Danto. “Arakawa-Gins.”  The Nation, August 11/18 1997, pp.31-34.  Reprinted in The Madonna of the Future: Essays in a Pluralistic Art World.  New York:  Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2000.  pp.265-272


Samira Kawash.  “Bodies at Risk- The Architecture of Reversible Destiny.”  PAJ 59, 1998, pp. 17-27.


Tom McEvilley. “Arakawa and Gins at the Guggenheim Soho.” Art in America, January 1998, pp. 100-101.


Gendai Shiso. (The Journal of Contemporary Thought -Tokyo), which devotes each issue to the work of a leading contemporary thinker, devoted its August 1996 issue to Arakawa/Gins.


Howard Smagula.  Currents: Contemporary Directions in the Visual Arts.  New Jersey: Prentice Hall, Inc., 1989


Italo Calvino. “The Arrow in the Mind,” Artforum, September, 1985.


Charles Bernstein and Susan B. Laufer.“Meaning the Meaning:  Arakawa’s Critique of Space,” Beauty and Critique (ed. by Richard Milazzo, 1983), 59-66.


Robert Creeley.  “‘Some Place Enormously Moveable’ – The Collaboration of Arakawa and Madeline H. Gins,” Artforum, Vol. 18 (Summer, 1980), 60-65.


Arthur Danto. “The Mechanism of Meaning: Work in Progress (1963-71, 1978) ” Print Collector’s Newsletter, Vol. 10 (September, 1979), 135-136.