Shozo Shimamoto

Japanese, 1928–2013

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Shozo Shimamoto

Japanese, 1928–2013

795
Followers
Biography

Co-founder of the Japanese avant-garde collective the Gutai Art Group in the 1950s, Shozo Shimamoto pioneered action painting, performance art, and mail art, with a prevailing concern for the tension between the element of chance and the artist’s control. Early in his career, while painting on newspaper, he accidentally punctured the surface—an entirely chance event that he would transform into a formal, repetitive operation. He began a career-long study of the violent encounter with the surface of the painting, primarily through the creation of holes and cuts. Painting in vivid color and forming abstract forms with irregularly patterned holes, Shimamoto found that his gestures left a record of the artist’s physical action and gave the image a performative element. He eventually expanded his practice into live performance, often staging the creation of his paintings for a live audience.

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Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
Blue chip status
Blue chip representation
Represented by internationally reputable galleries.
Group
Group show at a major institution
Castello di Rivoli, and 2 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
Tate
Publication
Reviewed by a major art publication
frieze, and 1 more
Fair
Included in a major biennial
Venice Biennale International Exhibition
Biography

Co-founder of the Japanese avant-garde collective the Gutai Art Group in the 1950s, Shozo Shimamoto pioneered action painting, performance art, and mail art, with a prevailing concern for the tension between the element of chance and the artist’s control. Early in his career, while painting on newspaper, he accidentally punctured the surface—an entirely chance event that he would transform into a formal, repetitive operation. He began a career-long study of the violent encounter with the surface of the painting, primarily through the creation of holes and cuts. Painting in vivid color and forming abstract forms with irregularly patterned holes, Shimamoto found that his gestures left a record of the artist’s physical action and gave the image a performative element. He eventually expanded his practice into live performance, often staging the creation of his paintings for a live audience.

Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
Blue chip status
Blue chip representation
Represented by internationally reputable galleries.
Group
Group show at a major institution
Castello di Rivoli, and 2 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
Tate
Publication
Reviewed by a major art publication
frieze, and 1 more
Fair
Included in a major biennial
Venice Biennale International Exhibition
Shows Featuring Shozo Shimamoto
Articles Featuring Shozo Shimamoto
Gutai Great Shozo Shimamoto Celebrated in a Spirited Solo Show
May 7th, 2015
The Warehouse’s “Parallel Views” of Postwar Italian and Japanese Art
Nov 8th, 2013
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