Renovation with a stranger
19 maj, 2003 -
06 jul, 2003
Shigeaki Iwai (Japan)
Workshop and exhibition

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Press release: rum46 gladly presents the Japanese artist Shigeaki Iwai. RENOVATION WITH A STRANGER
"This project may be characterized as a small model of cultural fusion which is involving compromise, friction and paradox.." Shigeaki Iwai

Friday, June 27th, 5.00 p.m.: Opening in rum46,
Studsgade 46, 8000 ÅrhusC.
The exhibition will be open from June 28th - July 6th ,
1.00 p.m. - 5.00. p.m.
Sunday, Juni 29th at 7.30 p.m.: Lecture by Shigeaki Iwai

The Japanese artist Shigeaki Iwai lives and works in Tokyo. During the past 6 weeks he has been in Århus – Denmark, and in cooperation with a Lebanese, Danish, and a Danish/Caribian family has created the project Renovation with a stranger.

The main idea behind the project is to invent a room for different cultures to meet and experience each other's equalities and differences. Every family has given Shigeaki Iwai a piece of furniture which they have been using in their home, and which therefore tells a story about the family, it´s life, and cultural belonging.

The artist and the families are collaborating in rebuilding the piece of furniture, and through this cooperation the possibility for dialogue between different cultural backgrounds emerges.
Shigeaki Iwai tells that in this process he has experienced many special moments, for instance he discovered in the meeting with the Lebanese family, that one of the Japanese patterns he showed to the family, originated in the Middle East. This meeting – where history, tradition and the present connect and are experienced in the present – is an experience he uses in his work.

The renovated furniture becomes the visible manifestation of the exchange, and it reveals how different cultural belongings constantly throughout history are transformed by confrontation and fusion. At the opening, the completed installation of renovated furniture and documentation from the process of exchange will be displayed.

Shigeaki Iwai and Yuan Mor'O Ocampas projects closes the second part of the international artproject Gæstebud – Feast/Hospitality; The Meal, organized by rum46. The commont concern for all 8 projects that constitute The Meal, are the interhuman meetings established by the artists. Meeting that is to be compared with the social action of a meal, as a place for interchange, confrontation and dialogue. Gæstebud – Feast/Hospitality in August enters it's third and last phase, The Letters of Thanks; a newspaper in which hospitality will be debated by various writers.

Yours faithfully
rum46, Studsgade 46, 8000 Århus C, Denmark
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Phone +45 86208625 / +45 24668915

Feast/Hospitality is supported by: Center for Dansk Billedkunst, Center for kultursamarbejde med Udviklingslandene, Billedkunstraadet, Nordisk Kulturfond, Aarhus Kommunes Kulturpulje, Aarhus Amt, Gevalia, Dan Media, FONA og HUSET

Gæstebud – Feast/Hospitality
Description of the project

The art project, Gæstebud/Hospitality will be shown in the center of the city of Århus and is based in the urban, social and political space. Feast/hospitality is the overlaying metaphor for the structure of the exhibition project, which will be divided into the three phases of the Feast: The invitation, the meal and the digestion/the thank you card. Our goal is to create a debate and focus on hospitality through artistic happenings, works and reflections. The project started in December 2002 and will continue until november 2003.

In different ways we have experienced a polarized debate on the theme "us and the strangers" in the public media as well as in the private forum. Rum46 will try with the projekt Gæstebud/Hospitality to create a comprehensive and varied dialogue in an area and with issues that concern us all.. We wish to focus on the significance of the feast and on hospitality through dialogues and specific actions. This project is about how we welcome people, not only the stranger, the one in a unfortunate social position, but also the 'neighbour'. With the title, Gæstebud/Hospitality we ask the artists and writers we have invited to take an anthropological, sociological, psychological,
political and aesthetic approach to the theme. The title is seen as an overlaying structure and narrative for the content in the project, whose intention is to open the receivers eyes and intellect for ethical and aesthetic reflection and action.

We have invited a number of Danish and foreign artists/groups of artists and writers who we find show a special interest in their practice and commitment concerning social and politcal problems. All are working with actual practices and are creating alternative spaces in life which show new ways to mix with and to take positions on the surrounding society. It is the human relations thatare in focus.

We hope to show statements covering philosophical reflection, the poetical and lyrical, the humoristic setting and the politically engaged with this varied group and with the different approaches to artistic intervention in the social field .

The project is divided into three modules:

April 2003
The city space can appear inviting and hospitable or rejecting and unapproachable to the visitor depending on its signs and urban structures. We will be using this space and the expressions and channels of the mass-communication with posters, billboards, and flyers to catch the attention of the passers-by through manifestations and statements which will set the theme in debate. Our purpose is to create reflection and wonder in displacing the content of well known commercial messages with surprising and critical expressions.

May/June 2003
Module II is about creating meetings by means of actions, which will involve the spectator and make him a participant. As opposed to module I which was concerned with the theme hospitality, communicated through words/pictures and where the spectator experiences the work of art at a distance, in module II there will be created an inter-human social gathering, as comparable with the meal. The theme is propagated through concrete bodily acts and the openness and eagerness of the spectator to participate.

September/October 2003
Module III will consist of a newspaper, and be seen as a "digestion" partly of the overlying problems on the theme hospitality and as a reflection over the executed works/happenings. We look at the paper as the philosophical and theoretical meeting point of the project and have invitede a number of Danish and foreign artists and writers to reflect critically on the different experiences of the feast/hospitality in our society. The newspaper will be printed in Danish and English, it will be available to the public and will also be shown on the internet.

We began Gæstebud/Hospitality in December 2002 with some lectures and public meetings based on a dialogue in our exhibition space, Studsgade 46 in Århus which in the coming year will hve the function as a public info-room, meeting room, and be the base for the invited artists, lecturers, and writers.

Studsgade 46
8000 Århus C
Tlf. +45 86208625
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Room for Improved Futures
Link til rum46's 2-årige samarbejdsprojekt 2018-2019