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Teiji Furuhashi: Lovers
July 30, 2016–April 16, 2017
Posted on April 28, 2016
Contemporary Galleries, second floor
Beginning in June 2016, The Museum of Modern Art is reinstalling its second-floor contemporary galleries with three large-scale, single-work installations by contemporary artists Teiji Furuhashi, Nan Goldin, and Tony Oursler. Presented in distinct galleries, the featured works on view are Furuhashi’s Lovers (1994), Goldin’s The Ballad of Sexual Dependency (1979-2004), and Oursler’s Imponderable (2015–16). Immersive in their construction and generous in size, the three large-scale galleries provide MoMA’s visitors with a unique opportunity to have deep encounters with these monumental works.
Lovers is an immersive, room-sized multimedia installation by Japanese artist Teiji Furuhashi (1960–1995). Life-sized images of the artist and other members of the Kyoto-based artist collective Dumb Type are projected onto the walls of a darkened room from a tower of computer-controlled video and slide projectors at its center. The figures move like specters around the perimeter of the space, in a looped choreographic sequence made variable by a visitor-activated sensor, which intervenes to restart one of the projections when triggered. Confined to their autonomous projections, these eponymous “lovers” overlap at moments within the sequence, whether running past each other or pausing in a gesture of embrace, yet their bodies never make contact. Made just one year before Furuhashi’s death from an AIDS-related illness, Lovers speaks to what the artist has described as “the theme of contemporary love in an ultra-romantic way.” Presented for the first time since its inaugural exhibition at MoMA in 1995, the installation showcases the results of an extensive conservation effort recently completed by the Museum’s media conservators. The installation is organized by Klaus Biesenbach, Chief Curator at Large, MoMA, and Director, MoMA PS1; Rajendra Roy, The Celeste Bartos Chief Curator of Film, MoMA; and Cara Manes, Assistant Curator, Department of Painting and Sculpture, MoMA.
Allianz is a partner of contemporary art at MoMA.