Tatsumi Orimoto has created a unique relationship to the mediums of performance, film and photography enabling an audience to become essential participants in the production of Art. With the development of instant imaging his strategy now seems like a prophetic paradigm, understanding the dominance of photos in the construction of identity and memory.
Tatsumi Orimoto hosted Grandmother's Lunch at The Grand Burstin Folkestone for Leaving Language and the sculpture Big Shoes was on show at The Metropole Gallery Folkestone in England.
This is how memory haunts the world in which we live: it is through shrines that we remember the dead, the past recedes away from us and fills the spaces between things.
This exhibition began on a warm Spring evening in Kawasaki, the curator was playing with Art Mama while Tatsumi Orimoto cooked. It was her last night in Japan where she had been introduced to Midori Mitamura, Noe Aoki and Mio Shirai at Tatsumi Orimoto’s retrospective Art X Life at Kawasaki City Museum.
In May 2017 he performed in Venice as part of the conceptual project The Contract organised by Venice Agendas. The work was called I Make Up And Become Mama. This was a tragic spectacle, unexpected in its poignancy and heightened by a shuffling melancholia. The artist walked across the Rialto Bridge and through Piazza San Marco wearing the giant Big Shoes made for Art Mama, the scene seemed to inhabit a reel of film dropped on the edit room floor.
No matter how much the Artist tried to forget, home was far away. Distracted by the impending and inevitable passing of Art Mama over the river to the afterworld, she died two weeks after his return.
Those red shoes were placed by a suitcase that took them to Italy together with small photos of his Mama making Art with him.
Perhaps it was the spirit of a Art Mama who summoned the hail that fell ferociously on the opening day of the exhibition. Rain cascaded down streets and created waterfalls in the thunder and lightening.
This weather shook the hills around the seaside town and threatened to rain off lunch for self defined Arty Grandmothers scheduled for that afternoon. Despite these conditions the intrepid and curious did arrive, they proceeded to first make an installation by collectively emptying out handbags much to the amusement of the staff. The hotel had seen all types of intoxication and bad behaviour but this was something new.
In the iconic Grand Burstin Hotel Tatsumi Orimoto explained to those assembled Grandmothers that all of the women in the famous tyre portraits were gone, it was a simple statement of mortality easily forgotten after the first course.
By the end of the lunch the guests were singing the White Cliffs Of Dover and a raucous and poignant Victorian ditty called She Was Poor But She Was Honest (It's the Same the Whole World Over) a lyrical tale about the misfortunes of a woman in a world dominated by pimps and aristocrats.
“Is what you see what I see?”
Waugh Office Productions is an