Bass Museum of Art. Mika Tajima

From Mar 13th through Jun 27th, 2010.

altConnecting modernist geometric abstraction to the shape of our built environment, artist Mika Tajima explores activities and performative roles defined by divisive spaces. Tajima’s The Double constructs a phantom performance space and workplace, referencing sources ranging from Herman Miller’s conflicted office furniture system from the late 1960s to the 1970 cult film Performance.

In Tajima’s installation, the exhibition space is divided by a phalanx of freestanding panels that merge aspects of sculpture, painting, and graphic design, to form an obstructive wall of pattern and reflection. Referencing recent and historically significant structures that form geopolitical borders and divisions, the modular panels also allude to the cubicle structures of the modern office environment, specifically Robert Propst’s Action Office designs commissioned by Herman Miller and launched in 1968. Considered at the time to be the optimal spatial configuration to foster office productivity as well as shape social interaction, now its legacy has become associated with alienation and rigid production roles.

Beyond this barrier, a swinging, hanging lamp based on a transformational scene in the film Performance casts extreme shadows and light activating the elements in the installation, and underscores their multiple roles as either sculptural sites for potential actions or surrogates for absent performers themselves.

Mika Tajima was born in Los Angeles and currently lives and works in New York. She graduated with an MFA from Columbia University School of the Arts in 2003, was the 2004 recipient of the Artists Space Independent Project Grant and a 2005 nominee for the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Initiative Program. Tajima was included in the 2008 Whitney Biennial in New York and in 2009 her exhibition Today is Not a Dress Rehearsal was on view at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Mika Tajima is represented by Elizabeth Dee Gallery in New York and Kevin Bruk Gallery in Miami.

Bass Museum of Art
2121 Park Avenue
Miami Beach, FL 33139

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