Contemporary Art Festivals in Tokyo

As it turns out, the Setouchi Triennale 2013 is just one of a dozen or so art festivals taking place in Japan this year.  Although I am feeling a little burned out with seeing art and art festivals (more on that in a later post), I still feel like I may make some new discoveries and inspirations at these festivals.  Here is a list of art festivals that I would like to visit this summer – time permitting.

Aichi Triennale 2013 in Nagoya – I went to this festival in 2010 and enjoyed the mixture of prominent  international and Japanese contemporary artists mixed with emerging Japanese contemporary artists.  This festival is on my “must see” list.  The culinary delights of Nagoya are another reason for visiting the Aichi Triennale this year!

Dojima River Biennale 2013 in Osaka – I just discovered this art festival through Oz Magazine’s annual Art Special Issue.  It takes place at the Dojima River Forum in Osaka.  This year’s edition is being curated by Rudy Tseng, a Taiwanese curator, with the theme “Little Water”.  Featuring a wide spectrum of international contemporary artists, some of the artists I am interested in seeing include Doug Aitken, Naoya Hatakeyama, Teppei Kaneuji, Wolfgang Laib, Mingwei Lee, Tadasu Takamine, and Lawrence Weiner.  I think I may combine a visit to the Dojima River Biennale and Aichi Triennale in mid-August.

Nakanojo Biennale 2013 in Gunma – This is a smaller art festival which primarily consists of mid-career and emerging Japanese artists.  The festival comes highly recommended by a friend who visited in 2009, but it is only open for one month and getting around may not be so simple without a car.

Kobe Biennale 2013 – I went to this festival in 2011.  It was a great way to explore Kobe.  Again, this festival is comprised primarily of mid-career and emerging Japanese artists.  I am not sure that I will attend again while the festival was enjoyable, but the memory of the artwork at the festival has not endured the two year gap.

Hanarart 2013 in Nara – I also discovered this festival through Oz Magazine’s annual Art Special Issue.  The goal of this festival, similar to that of the Echigo-Tsumari Triennale and Setouchi Triennale, is to revitalize the area.

Rokko Meets Art 2013 at Mount Rokko – Another art festival taking place in collaboration with the environment accessible from Kobe or Osaka.

Other art festivals of interest include At Art Uwajima 2013 in Ehime and Yamaguchi Center for Arts and Media 10th Anniversary Festival.

I will be happy if I make it to the Aichi Triennale and Dojima River Biennale.  Anything else will be a icing on the cake.

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