Tetsumi Kudo: Cultivation
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Contemplating Japanese artist Tetsumi Kudo’s work in the 21st century provokes a sense of the uncanny on multiple levels: grotesquely beautiful on their own, his abject sculptures seem to foretell today’s environmental concerns with their depictions of ecological decay. As the artist’s work reaches a peak of topicality, this volume presents a focused selection of Kudo’s pieces that demonstrate a postwar awareness of the atomic bomb’s effect on reproduction and the environment.Born in Osaka, Kudo’s life was greatly impacted by the aftermath of the atomic bomb in 1945; this trauma compounded by the Vietnam War’s ever-present atmosphere of destruction led to a consistent focus on dystopia and decomposition in his work.Kudo’s fluorescent birdcages and blacklight terrariums are furnished with an assortment of sculptures and found objects: melted plastic flowers, colourful phallic chrysalises and dismembered resin body parts come together to convey a distinctly modern anxiety in regard to our ailing world. Kudo’s work does not intend to provide comfort in the midst of crisis; rather, his pieces urge viewers to reflect on how we may or may not continue to survive in a world that we ourselves have ruined through pollution and consumerism.
ISBN 9788793659315. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art.