Noritoshi Hirakawa

February 22 – March 29, 2014

Selected Works

Lei Lenka - Yuriko, 2012
Single-channel video, 3' 7"

Press Release

Chi-Wen Gallery will present works by internationally acclaimed artist Noritoshi Hirakawa. In addition to his S-Series photographs, his video Lei Lenka – Yuriko will be shown. Noritoshi has always been aware of hidden structures in society, his artworks liberate and redirect the viewer into other aspects of “what it means to be a human.” The exhibition title “INFINITE DANCE” has been chosen by the artist to create a discourse on the issue of life and death.

Lei Lenka – Yuriko
Noritoshi Hirakawa, 2012

In Japanese Lei means spirit and Lenka means the poetic link between humans. Lei Lenka express this link between people and spirit, by the innocence and aesthetic value expressed in the movement within ‘real life’ by people. This lifts people out of the limitations of social and private importance. It is a dance we all do everyday and it holds poignant aesthetic, poetic and sensual meaning – whatever we do. In this work, the mundane with Will becomes spiritual as shown in Quantum Physics. A ‘meaningless’ gesture or posture holds endless meaning; captured by video and photography it is offered to the viewer for interpretation. Over three thousands years, the ball game in Mayan culture or the basket ball in this contemporary society has been indicating the infinite cycle of our spirits that has never been diminished or disappeared. Endlessly the spirits is moving around like a basket ball goals in and the moment the game starts again by dropping down the ball passing through the goal’s net as if our death that means losing our clothes of spirit and then appear again by getting another clothes for the same spirit. The rhythm of this cycle that we are living as “Infinite Dance.”

Noritoshi Hirakawa, 1997

Death exists next to life. There is no clear line between them, and death is provided as one of the alternatives to living. Once one lets his/her body reply on this alternative, there is no way back. Thus death is a highly valid individual right, and functions as a conduct which should be respected as a human’s privilege. People find some kind of fantasy in this conduct. It is probably because everyone consciously imagines what it would be like, more than once, and experiences regret that s/he couldn’t make up his/her mind. A vicarious experience of “death” which could be aesthetic, started as I visited ten famous suicide spots in Switzerland, fixed the point one-meter away from the place where the suicider stepped out, and decided the range of viewing scope for images toward the direction of gravity. The scene, which one sees there, is the place which welcomes a person’s death, and probably is the gate to the last prelude from “life” to “death” which no one has ever talked about. Those who have already knocked on this door do not have the means to talk about how beautiful is the scenery from the door to the last prelude. However, my photo series sadistically mesmerizes the viewer into wandering into the moment when s/he flies into the air and becomes vacuumed by gravity right after taking the first step.