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Chim↑Pom: K-I-S-S-I-N-G
Written by In the document   
Published: September 22 2011

Courtesy of the artist and The Container
Copyright© Chim↑Pom

The Dalai Lama defines compassion as “a mental attitude based on the wish for others to be free of their suffering,” and indeed since the disastrous events of 3 11 in Japan, many local match-making agencies reported a surge in membership while a wedding service company reported a 50% increase at their Fukushima branch, according to the Asahi Shimbun. It seems like crises make us want to be loved. This angst and the search for closeness that evolved following the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear radiation leaks are the subject of a new installation by the Japanese collective Chim↑Pom at The Container.

Chim↑Pom are not novice at depicting through their art interventions and works their interest and concerns with life and society, and their socio-political approach, which defines their practice so comprehensively, has clearly intensified since 3 11. Their “addition” to the Taro Okamoto mural in Shibuya is rumored to have attracted tens of thousands of spectators and a frenzy of both local and international press. But Chim↑Pom’s criticism and efforts to encourage public discourse about the events are quite genuine, and not a one-off stunt in a public space. This is of course evident by a range of works they have produced since the disaster with a clear and persistent agenda to promote social change.

The new exhibition at The Container, entitled, K-I-S-S-I-N-G, with childish-charm, naivety and subversive humor, presenting a video piece, Kiss, as its focal point. Feelings of loneliness, fragility and angst are evoked by the installation, while also drawing a reference to the power outages experienced in Japan following the nuclear disaster. The installation also includes broken light bulbs and a photograph entitled, King & Queen. The photograph depicts Ellie, a member of the collective, in a sexually-charged pose kissing a nearly life-size statute of a crucified Jesus.

The exhibition at The Container is synchronized with an additional exhibition of Chim↑Pom at Mujin-To Production, entitled, Survival Dance. The exhibition at Mujin-To Production is running between 24 September – 15 October, with an opening reception on 24 September, 18:00-20:00.

About the artists:
Chim↑Pom is a six-member Japanese art collective based in Tokyo. The collective was officially launched in 2005 and has gathered both national and international recognition for its exploration of socio-political issues and its examination of the themes of life and death.

The controversial and interdisciplinary disposition of the collective regularly attracts both national and international press and their recent “guerilla” public intervention / action performance at Shibuya station (may 2011) in Tokyo, scrutinizing the Japanese nuclear disaster at the Fukushima plant, has attracted many visitors, and extensive national press coverage.

In March 2010, Chim↑Pom's first art collection book was published. In the same year, they were the recipients of the Asia Art Award and featured in the São Paulo Art Biennale.

Chim↑Pom are rapidly becoming one of the most important forces in the local art scene, and recognized not only by art lovers, but also as an important social movement with a wide mainstream appeal.

Additional information about the collective is available at www.chimpom.jp (Japanese)

* The text provided by The Container.

Perod: Monday, September 26 - Monday, December 19, 2011
Venue: The Container
Opening reception: Monday, September 26, 2011, 19:30 - 21:30

Last Updated on September 26 2011

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