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Yasue Maetake Overview

born: 1972
born in: Japan
lives in: New York
Yasue Maetake's work explores productive and entropic tensions between nature and science through mixed-media sculpture and video. "Warrior", a tree-like assemblage of steel, copper, resin, and silk, uses inventive material juxtapositions to underscore humankind's attempted mastery of nature. Referencing Buddhist and... [more]

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Yasue Maetake

YASUE MAETAKE: TO SEE THE MOON IN EXILE 24 March – 28 April 2007 Opening Reception: Saturday, March 24, 6-8 pm Gallery Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 10 - 6 Harris Lieberman is pleased to present To See the Moon in Exile, the debut New York solo exhibition of Japanese artist Yasue Maetake. The sculptures and video in this exhibition represent focused elements of the artist’s personal cosmology, where nature and science are metaphors for the ascension and entropy of individuals and civilizations. Drawing upon ancient texts and narratives from Eastern religions such as Buddhism and Shinto, Maetake focuses upon mankind’s historical attempts to bend nature to its will through ideology and institutions. By depicting man’s perpetual struggle with nature, the artist proposes the concept of individuality as a vain, delusional aspiration, and questions the artifice associated with cultural notions of beauty. To See the Moon in Exile is the English translation of Haisho No Tsuki, the title of Maetake’s three-channel video installation in the rear gallery. The video depicts the artist alone in a world devoid of human presence. Maetake’s impassive expression serves to objectify and formalize the video’s scenes of drama and brutality, resisting human empathy. In addition to the video, Maetake will present four new sculptures created over the past year. Polaris and Cardinal Direction equate sculptural transformation with humanity’s futile desire to claim ownership over nature, revealing the intractability of raw materials. Warrior addresses the impermanence of success while incorporating sculptural elements which recall the omikuji fortunes at Shinto shrines, and Self-Mummy examines alchemical transformation and artifice, inspired by the esoteric practice of a small sect of ascetics who ingest tree bark over a number of years, activating a biochemical process of self- embalmment. Yasue Maetake received an MFA from Columbia University in 2006. In 2005 her work was featured in Cult of Science, a solo exhibition at the National Gallery Slovackeho Muzeum in Uherske Hradiste, Czech Republic. Maetake has also participated in group exhibitions at Harris Lieberman, Frederic Snitzer Gallery in Miami, and Max Protech Gallery in New York. This is the artist’s first solo exhibition in the United States. We would like to extend a special thanks to Sharp Electronics for their generous sponsorship of this exhibition.


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