25 Jul.,2020 – 19 Sep.,2020
Artist Miwa Yanagi, a native of Kobe, is a graduate of the Kyoto City University of Arts. In the early 1990s her color photography work entitled Elevator Girls garnered considerable attention, and in 1998 she participated in the inaugural Taipei Biennial at the Taipei Fine Arts Museum at the invitation of curator Fumio Nanjo. Peaches in Time, opening at Taipei’s Beyond Gallery on July 25, is the artist’s first solo exhibition in Taiwan.
This exhibition at Beyond Gallery centers largely around the photographic work titled The Goddess and the God Separate Under the Peach Tree, as well as the 2018 video work Throwing Peaches. The Goddess and the God Separate Under the Peach Tree represents Yanagi’s first set of works since picking the camera back up again, inspired and informed by the founding myths of Japan: the story of the Japanese creator deity Izanagi and his creator goddess sister/wife Izanami. The physical theater of the peach hurling in Throwing Peaches is a metaphor for the god’s heartlessness and abandonment of the goddess that led to the tragedy of their separation, and ultimately to the binary division of the world – into lightness and dark, world and underworld.
Although Miwa Yanagi may choose fruit and vegetation for subject matter, her focus is placed squarely upon people and human nature. Whether nuclear accidents or gender discrimination, people are always involved, and these are the results of human nature. Yanagi makes repeated use of metaphors and allusions in her works to say that the key moments of life, from birth to death, are fleeting, yet the stubbornness of human nature always abides; and attempts to alter it through study or learning lessons remains a Sisyphean task. Employing her powers of refined thinking and keen observation, Miwa Yanagi offers her observations on the essence of life.