Sayaka Ganz

The exhibition Sayaka Ganz. Dances of Nature is organized by the Hermann Geiger Cultural Foundation, Cecina, Livorno and curated by the Art Director of the Foundation, Alessandro Schiavetti. This is the first solo exhibition held in Italy by Sayaka Ganz, an internationally renowned artist of Japanese origin, born in Yokohama and now residing in the United States.

Sayaka reclaims and classifies a plastic universe in order to find a new, mainly aesthetic function for the objects she uses in the construction of marvellous figurative works of art. Her art takes shape through plastic objects of everyday use-nondescript, ordinary items of our present that have been thrown away.

This creative process is influenced both by Japanese culture and real life: Japanese Shinto beliefs are such that all objects have spirits and Japanese children are taught that objects that are discarded before their time weep at night inside the trash bin. Sayaka spent her early childhood in Japan. Then, when she was 9 years old, her family moved to Brazil. At the age of 13 she was back to Japan and then moved to Hong Kong. After that, Sayaka decided to study Fine Arts at Indiana University, in the United States, where she still lives. Owing to her many moves around the world, this artist has always tried to find a sense of belonging and harmony in the environment.

Giving new life to discarded items – transforming them into organic, seemingly moving forms – gives Sayaka a sense of peace and calmness as this process shows her that every single piece, although seemingly useless and deprived of any ties with the surrounding environment, can actually find its own balance and position. Each object goes beyond its primary function and gives origin to an apparently living animal figure.

The artist draws inspiration for her sculptures from the shape of objects as such as well as from the natural world. By so doing, she joins the artificial universe of human products to nature. Initially, the artist studies the appearance of the animal she wants to make, then creates an armature in welded steel wire that will serve as the support structure for various plastic items. These, all together, will take the shape of an animal in motion, with incredible colours and threadlike shapes.

Exactly one hundred years ago, in 1913, Marcel Duchamp exhibited his renowned Bicycle Wheel. Since then, the object «as such», the non-artistic item, has made its way into the world of art. As Angela Vettese puts it, art «can be done with anything», with endless materials that can be used in endless ways. Failure and technological obsolescence condemn the products of industrial and consumer society to a short-lived existence. Sayaka Ganz’s art is the art of accumulating and recycling them in order to produce essentially figurative sculptures; for Sayaka, the object is something that has not concluded its existence but also a discreet item that, combined with others, can be crystallized into evocative, naturalistic forms.

In addition to six large groups of animal sculptures by Sayaka Ganz, the exhibition includes strings of «Luminariales», i.e. brightly coloured chandeliers in reclaimed plastic made by the artist together with Jim Merz, a kinetic sculptor from Portland, who did the lighting and motion part of the work. Sayaka and Jim have been collaborating for three years.
The exhibition, staged at the Geiger Foundation Exhibition Hall at 32 Piazza Guerrazzi in Cecina, Livorno, will be open to the public daily from Saturday 30 March to Sunday 26 May 2013, from 4 to 8 p.m. Admission is free.


Sayaka Ganz. Dances of Nature
From March 30 to May 26, 2013
Hermann Geiger Cultural Foundation, Exhibition Hall 
Piazza Guerrazzi, 32 – 57023 Cecina, Livorno
Opening hours: daily from 4 to 8 p.m. – Free admission

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