Artist: Mika Tajima
Venue: Bass Museum of Art, Miami
Date: March 13 – June 27, 2010
Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.
Images courtesy of Bass Museum of Art, Miami
Connecting Modernist geometric abstraction to the shape of our built environment, artist Mika Tajima explores activities and performative roles defined by divisive spaces. Tajima’sThe Double constructs a phantom performance space and workplace, referencing sources ranging from Herman Miller’s conflicted office furniture system from the late 1960s to the 1970 cult film Performance.
In Tajima’s installation, the exhibition space is divided by a phalanx of freestanding panels that merge aspects of sculpture, painting, and graphic design to form an obstructive wall of pattern and reflection. Referencing recent and historically significant structures that form geopolitical borders and divisions, the modular panels also allude to the cubicle structures of the modern office environment, specifically Robert Propst’s “Action Office” designs commissioned by Herman Miller and launched in 1968. Considered at the time to be the optimal spatial configuration to foster office productivity as well as shape social interaction, now its legacy has become associated with alienation and rigid production roles.
Beyond this barrier, a swinging, hanging lamp based on a transformational scene in the film Performance casts extreme shadows and light, activating the elements in the installation, and underscores their multiple roles as either sculptural sites for potential actions or surrogates for absent performers themselves.