Excavation 2019 Rasen

Excavation 2019 Rasen

Dates/Time: 08/10/19
8:00 pm - 9:30 pm

Space: Theaterlab | Theater

Category: Event

Live Painting by Naoki Iwakawa
Live Sound by Ikue Mori
Live Projections by Jay Eckardt
Film by Koji Ohwada
Saturday, August 10th at 8pm
Tickets: $15 in advance 
HERE | $20 at the door

Rasen is a performance cycle inspired by the phenomenon of the spiral, a pattern found all throughout the natural world. For Rasen, a single canvas is painted multiple times, creating an art object with layers of hidden paintings beneath the surface. The contours of each previous layer have unexpected effects upon the next.

Rasen has changed texture, shape and colors across several painting sessions, both public and private. In between sessions, Naoki Iwakawa leaves the canvas outside for months at a time, allowing the natural elements to leave their unpredictable mark on the work. Iwakawa video records each session and projects those recordings during his live performances on the very same canvas while painting it live, as a way to show the audience the history behind the painting. In this performance at Theaterlab, Ikue Mori, composer and former drummer of the No Wave Band DNA, joins Iwakawa for a second time, creating the original soundscape guiding Iwakawa’s mesmerizing uninhibited painting.

Naoki Iwaka Biography

Naoki Iwakawa was born in Osaka, Japan, in 1967. Growing up, he became interested the New York art world after reading about it in magazines. He graduated from Osaka University of the Arts, where he also taught briefly as an assistant professor of Graphic Design.

At the age of 24 Iwakawa moved to New York City, where he began showing art at OK Harris and Noho Gallery in Manhattan. In 1996, Iwakawa co-founded the CAVE, an experimental art space that fostered an eclectic group of musicians, artists, and performers. At the CAVE, Iwakawa further developed his interest in live performance painting as well as the artistic use of fire, a practice that would later garner him the title of Village Voice’s Best Pyrotechnic Action Painter (2008). He learned to produce paintings instinctively, with an emphasis on acceptance of the natural world and the present moment. The idea of the moment, as sought by Zen Buddhists, has been the prominent theme of Iwakawa’s work and life.

Iwakawa is also drawn to the relationship between music and visual art. He collaborated for many years with Tim Wright, of the band DNA.  One of Iwakawa’s latest projects is Sense of Noise, a performance series featuring artists and musicians improvising together over a single yet constantly transforming idea.