art cruise gallery by Baycrew's

Toranomon Hills,
Tokyo

THINK

Everything crafted by humans holds inherent value.

2023.12.21

Hello, this is Osamu Oouchi, Art Director at Art Cruise Gallery (ACG).
I plan to document my daily thoughts and experiences here in the future.
While praying that it will contribute to the future direction ACG should take…
For my initial post, I would like to share a story tied to ACG.

I find that the value of art has become quite complex and challenging to understand.

Due to the high prices, it often ends up in the hands of a select few, and only a limited audience has the opportunity to engage with it in specific places. Of course, there is a wealth of incredible art that rightfully deserves such recognition.

As someone who entered this world out of love for art and has been pursuing it ever since, I want to reexamine the significance of art. As one way to do this, I have initiated the ‘Matsumoto Architectural Arts Festival’ in Matsumoto City, Nagano Prefecture.

At the festival, I am also attempting to juxtapose what is called art with what is not. This is because I believe that everything created by humans is precious.

From clothing, everyday appliances, cars, bicycles, and tableware to movies, manga, anime, and more, the list is endless. There are numerous wonderful and beautiful creations made by people.

Are these creations truly inferior to art? Which contributes more to enriching people’s lives? I aim to put such questions into practice.
In my involvement with ACG, I have decided to embrace the idea that art should become an essential commodity on par with everyday items, not inferior or less essential.

In a sense, this is also a form of ‘juxtaposition,’ but it differs slightly from the previous concept I mentioned.
I love the environment of the white cube in art museums, but as someone who believes that the true role of art is to enrich people’s lives, I want it to infiltrate individual living spaces rather than being confined to the protected white cube.

This perspective aligns with what I like to call ‘Reverse Folk Art Philosophy’ (a term I coined). ‘Folk art’ imbues everyday objects with aesthetic value, enhancing the beauty of the mundane and making it delightful when adorned.

For example, if we find beauty in a ladle and exhibit it in a museum, the public might start thinking, ‘I wonder if my ladle at home is amazing too?’ As a result, their perspective on daily life could change, making their lives more enjoyable, and so on.

The ‘Reverse Folk Art Philosophy’ is about bringing art that typically only serves its function in museums into everyday life. Even though it may lack a practical function, my room has become so endearing, as if it gained a special charm…

When something contrasting intrudes strongly, I believe it triggers a shift in perspectives in the surroundings. Even in a cluttered and messy room, having a powerful piece of art seems to affirm the surrounding clutter.

The previously mentioned ‘Matsumoto Architectural Arts Festival’ is an art festival conceived as a space to express this idea, with the architectural venue taking center stage.

Matsumoto Architectural Arts Festival: Artist - Taku Obata
Matsumoto Architectural Arts Festival: Artist – Taku Obata, Venue – Kappou Matsumoto-kan (Japanese traditional restaurant)

ACG is a gallery that also engages in sales. With such a philosophy in mind, I aspire to confront the current state of art and send it into people’s lives, integrating art into everyday living.

I will look forward to the opportunity to share our art at ACG.

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