EIKO OTAKE: I Invited Myself, vol. III

Eiko Otake

    EIKO OTAKE: I Invited Myself, vol. III

  • WHEN

    September 9 – December 9, 2023

*The gallery will be closed Saturday, October 7th for AAI's annual Block Party.

EIKO OTAKE: I Invited Myself, vol.III is the third iteration of Eiko Otake’s I Invited Myself, an exhibition series that the artist started in 2022. Following the first iteration showcased at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the second iteration at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, Asian Arts Initiative and The Fabric Workshop and Museum have partnered to present different versions of EIKO OTAKE: I Invited Myself in Philadelphia. The institutions have worked together and alongside the artist to present specific aspects of Otake’s expansive practice.

Join us September 9th for a screening and live performance marking the opening of this exhibit. Register for one of the performance times here.

Born and raised in Japan and a resident of New York since 1976, Eiko Otake is a movement–based, interdisciplinary artist. From 1972–2013, Eiko worked as Eiko & Koma, creating 46 performance works, two career exhibitions, and numerous media works. Their durational performance living installations were commissioned by the Whitney Museum, the Walker Art Center, and MoMA. Their Retrospective Project (2009–2012) culminated in a comprehensive monograph, Time is Not Even, Space is Not Empty, published by the Walker Art Center. 

Eiko now directs her own projects and performs as a soloist. She also creates films, videos, sound/voice pieces, and installations. Eiko’s solo project A Body in Places mounted over 70 site-specific performances and a month-long Danspace Project Platform of the same title in 2016. In 2021, she created two monologue pieces: They did not hesitate for Hiroshima Nagasaki memorial and Slow Turn for the 20th anniversary of 9/11.

Working with historian and photographer William Johnston in many locations of irradiated Fukushima since 2014, Eiko produced the multi-dimensional project A Body in Fukushima that includes exhibitions, installations, screenings, and performances. Co-presented by Performa 2017 and Met Live Arts, Eiko performed all day at each of the three Metropolitan Museum of Art sites while projecting a seven-hour video she created from photographs taken in Fukushima. In 2021, her Fukushima project culminated with the publication of a book by Wesleyan University Press and the world premiere of a feature length film of the same title at the Museum of Modern Art’s Doc Fortnight Film Festival.

Launched in 2017, The Duet Project: Distance Is Malleable is a mutable and evolving series of experiments in collaboration with the living and dead that Eiko directs and performs within. Negotiating differences of race, age, culture, ethnicity, religion, discipline, and gender, the artists seek to maximize the potentials of their encounters. Her collaborators include Joan Jonas, Margaret Leng Tan, and Beverly McIver, among others. The Duet Project also produced collaboratively created video works, including a feature length film No Rule Is Our Rule with Beijing-based artist Wen Hui.

In 2022, Eiko started her ten-year project I Invited Myself, in which she creates, advocates, and exhibits her media works. Elise Butterfield co-curated the first iteration in 2021 at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), and the second iteration was presented at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College. The third iteration in fall 2023 will be at the Asian Arts Initiative and Fabric Workshop in Philadelphia. In 2023, she also presented two installations and two installation-related performance works in New York—Mother at the Historic Chapel in the Green-Wood Cemetery and Drawing in Circles with Joan Jonas at the Castelli Gallery.

This exhibit is made possible with the support of William Penn Foundation, The Culture and Community Power Fund, Pennsylvania Council for the Arts, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Ford Foundation, and the National Performance Network.

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