December 22, 2008
The cultures of both Japan and Brazil embrace deeply sensorial temperaments, but their approach to touching––haptic communication––could not be more different. For the Japanese, it’s a private pleasure, and for Brazilians, the Carnival says it all. These contrasting collective viewpoints are explored in “Haptic,” an exhibition curated by the Brazilian-born, New York–based artist Vik Muniz. The six artists––three from Japan and three from Brazil––spent two months working together last fall as part of the Tokyo Wonder Site artist-in-residency program. One of the more successful works here, Aiko Miyanaga’s Phase-Suitcase, 2008, encases toxic-smelling naphthalene, which offers an olfactory assault as the piece slowly disintegrates. In contrast, Tomoko Nagai’s White Patio, 2008, a painting depicting a bright pink castle and a fairy sprinkling golden stars on a teddy bear, plucks at heartstrings. The table in Mika Kubota’s sculpture Deshadowed: Clinging, 2008, tests the human body. Among the pieces by Brazilians, Efrain Almeida’s delicate wooden-moth installation Ga (Moth), 2008, complements the ethereal nature of the show. The vibrant, richly textured collage O Pescador (The Fisherman), 2008, is a signature work by Leda Catunda. Erika Verzutti experiments with soft and light materials in her Japanese-influenced Peacock, 2008. Ambitious, visionary, witty, and teasing, “Haptic” bears the Muniz touch.
Link to the original article "Haptic": Review