kamakura-japan

Jikken Kōbō, L’Ève Future, 1955. Performance view, Haiyuza Theatre, Tokyo, 1955. Photo: Kiyoji Ōtsuji.

“Jikken Kōbō—Experimental Workshop”

The Museum of Modern Art Kamakura & Hayama

Jikken Kōbō, L’Ève Future, 1955. Performance view, Haiyuza Theatre, Tokyo, 1955. Photo: Kiyoji Ōtsuji.

Jikken Kōbō, or Experimental Workshop, was a renowned Japanese art-and-performance collective of exceptional diversity. The group consisted of five visual artists, five composers (some of whom, including Toru Takemitsu, would later achieve international fame), a pianist, a lighting designer, an engineer, and a music critic/poet—all of whom gathered around the well-known art critic Shuzo Takiguchi, who gave the group its name. From 1951 until their disbanding in 1957, they produced and presented experimental stage performances and concerts of avant-garde music, playing pieces composed by the members and also presenting works by Béla Bartók, Norman Dello Joio, and Oliver Messiaen, among others, for the first time in Japan. Experimental Workshop also created sound-synched automatic slide shows combining abstract images, concrete-music pieces, and poetic texts in annual performance

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the May 2013 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.