Arakawa + Gins Tokyo Office (hereafter AG Tokyo) has collected, organized, and scanned archival material centering on correspondence and created the “Shūsaku Arakawa/Arakawa + Gins Archive” Database since 2010, when Arakawa passed away. From 2016, we have regularly held research meetings with Institute of Oriental and Occidental Studies/ Studies of the Architectural Body at Kansai University and undertaken collaborative research with Reversible Destiny Foundation (hereafter RDF).
At AGxKANSAI 2022, we will report on our progress and present selected materials from the vast archives dating back to 1979. The year 1979 saw the first museum exhibition held in Japan since his departure to the U.S. and the death of Shūzō Takiguchi, Arakawa’s close friend, mentor, and sympathetic supporter. We will reexamine Arakawa in 1979, this important year in his life and career, with a fresh eye on materials in the collection of AG Tokyo and RDF, along with correspondence between the critic and the artist held in Keiō University Art Center’s Shūzō Takiguchi Papers.
Takeyoshi Matsuda (General Manager, A+G Tokyo), “Texts on Shūsaku Arakawa + Madeline Gins from Publication Archives”
I will present the method of constructing the Arakawa+Gins Archive, especially of materials created by others on them, including academic papers, as well as articles and texts in magazines, newspapers, and exhibition catalogues, among others, discuss what can be understood from this body of materials, and consider the future prospects of our archival studies.
Haruka Seno (Archive Researcher, A+G Tokyo), “Archive Report: Another ARAKAWA as Seen through His Letters of 1979”
In this presentation, I will report on the correspondence archives, focusing on Arakawa’s letters and other materials from 1979. Having returned to Japan for the first time in 18 years for his solo exhibition, he was described by the media as “an artist who abandoned Japan.” However, this private body of correspondence reveals “another Arakawa” in 1979.
Haruka Kawaguchi (Archive Researcher, A+G Tokyo), “Letters between Shūsaku Arakawa and Shūzō Takiguchi in 1977”
From AG Tokyo’s correspondence archives, I will focus on Arakawa’s correspondence with his mentor Shūzō Takiguchi. Together with the letters in other archives, Arakawa’s correspondence with Takiguchi will allow us to reconstruct a chronological sequence of their exchanges and reimagine the significance of their dialogue.
Momoyo Homma (Director, A+G Tokyo /President, RDF), “Why did Arakawa say ‘I just want Takiguchi-san to see it’ at the time of his 1979 solo exhibition?”
Building on the findings of Kawaguchi’s study, I will focus on the letters exchanged between Arakawa and Takiguchi during the preparation period for his 1979 solo exhibition. In doing so I will explore Arakawa’s
Presentation will be followed by discussion and Q&A.
Arakawa + Gins Tokyo office (AG Tokyo, officially Coordinologist, Inc. since 2002) is based in the Reversible Destiny Lofts Mitaka (2005, Tokyo), one of the important built works designed and produced by artists/architects/founders Arakawa and Madeline Gins. AG Tokyo has worked to pass the legacy of Arakawa + Gins onto future generations, while ensuring their projects cross over into such different fields as art, science, philosophy and architecture, among others.