LAZNIA 1 Fluorescent Chrysanthemum Remembered
ul. Jaskolcza 1, Gdansk Dolne Miasto
Exhibition: 14th December 2018 - 24th February 2019
Opening: Friday, 14th December (free entry)
Guided tour with audio description: 14th December, 6 p.m. (as part of the official opening)
Guided tour in Polish Sign Language: 14th December, 6.30 p.m.

Information about tickets: HERE
Curator: Jasia Reichardt
Coordination: Emila Golnik
Cooperation: Agata Janikowska

It has been exactly 50 years since Fluorescent Chrysanthemum was presented at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London. Selected works by Japanese avant-garde artists showcased at the time will soon be on display at ŁAŹNIA 1 CCA in Gdańsk, at the exhibition under the extended title Fluorescent Chrysanthemum Remembered.

“(...) I remember when back in 1967 someone told me about a Tokyo artist who had designed an original room. Upon entering, it seemed empty. Only in UV light did it turn out that the room was in fact fully furnished: visitors noticed outlines of tables, chairs and bookshelves. I’ve never seen this room, but when I first went to Japan, I got to see some outstanding artworks that made use of fluorescent materials” - Jasia Reichardt, curator of the London and Gdansk exhibitions.

In 1968, the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London hosted Fluorescent Chrysanthemum – the first exhibition of Japanese art in Europe after World War II. The late 1960s were a very turbulent time for both Japan and Japanese art. The year 1970 marked the World Exhibition in Osaka (EXPO ’70) – the first such show in Asia. The controversial Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan (ANPO) was scheduled to be renewed in the same year.

“While artists were unanimously against renewing ANPO, EXPO ’70 caused a split in the milieu. Many artists had already accepted invitations to design exhibition pavilions and present their works there as part of an event criticised for celebrating modern technology in a nationalist and capitalist vein” - Julian Ross.

The London exhibition Fluorescent Chrysanthemum, which opened two years before these events, managed to capture Japanese artistic cinema before this change, regarded as the end of a certain chapter in the history of Japanese cinematography.

The title of the exhibition refers to the fluorescent effects used in the works of Japanese artists and monshō (the Japanese equivalent of an emblem) in the form of a chrysanthemum. The exhibition at ŁAŹNIA 1 CCA will include photographs, films, calendars, books, vinyl record covers, graphic works, sheet music and documentation of the 1968 exhibition by Kohei Sugiura (designer of the London exhibition) and Katsushiro Yamaguchi, among others.

*quotes from the exhibition catalogue
Calendar with Japanese motives.    Calendar with Japanese motives.
Municipal Institution of Culture