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On Kawara

November 17, 2018 – December 22, 2018

On Kawara

Exhibition View – I GOT UP, 2008

Krakow Witkin Gallery proudly presents a survey of On Kawara’s bound book works.

In one sense, each of the works in the show are a compendium of a project, yet Kawara saw them each as a work in of itself. Being aware, present and taking note were active parts of Kawara’s daily practice. Retrospection, compilation and juxtaposition were significant actions that Kawara utilized to look both outwardly at the world, its inhabitants and activities, as well as inwardly at his own daily activities.

The first of the projects is “One Million Years”.  This project covers one million years before the conception of the work and one million years after the formulation of the idea of including the future in the project. The work is both incredibly expansive (covering two million years) and specifically concise (bound in two volumes.)  The trilogy of “I Met”, “I Went” and “I Got Up” are similarly tight and loose simultaneously, as each ‘documents’, over a defined period of time, specific actions by the artist. Neither documenting his full life nor every activity of each day, the information serves to both give us specific information and also a ‘diving board’ with which to think and explore our own lives, as well as history in general.

“I Read”, the last of the exhibited projects, presents images of detailed collages of newspaper clippings. Stacks, juxtapositions and notes provide subjective additions not seen in the other works.  Both the most personal and the most outwardly looking of all the projects, “I Read” lays plain the daily balance of the internal and external in one’s life.

Works In Exhibition

I GOT UP

On Kawara I GOT UP 2008 12 volumes in grey wooden slipcase consisting of postcards recording the date, name and the address of both recipient and artist during May 10, 1968 and September 17, 1979

Volume size: 8 1/4 x 5 7/8 inches each (21 x 14.8 cm each)
Slipcase size: 20 x 7 1/2 x 10 inches (51.2 x 19.2 x 25.8 cm)
Edition of 90
Signatures are double-stitched with linen thread
(Inventory #30073)

 

I GOT UP is one of the three parts of the trilogy by On Kawara.

 

Between May 10, 1968 and September 17, 1979, On Kawara sent a postcard every day stating where he was. On the back of each card he stamped the words “I GOT UP AT”, followed by the time at which he stood up that day. The date, the name and the address of both the recipient and the artist are also stamped on the card. I GOT UP brings this corpus together in twelve volumes and the information within intersects with the facts reported in I MET and I WENT, the two other parts of the trilogy.

 

 

Set of 12 volumes – Total of 4,160 pages

I WENT

On Kawara I WENT 2007 12 volumes in a Sycamore slipcase consisting of the artist's daily trips using a red line on a map

during a twelve-year period from June 1, 1968 to September 17, 1979.
Volume size:  8 1/4 x 5 7/8 inches each  (21 x 14.8 cm each)
Slipcase size:  22 1/2 x 7 1/2 x 10 inches  (57.3 x 19.2 x 25.8 cm)
Edition of 90
Signatures are double-stitched with linen thread
(Inventory #30074)

I WENT is one of the three parts of the trilogy by On Kawara

Between June 1, 1968 and September 17, 1979, On Kawara used a red line to trace each of his daily trips on a map. Each day of this twelve-year period is represtented in the twelve volumes of I WENT. The date of every trip is stamped at the bottom of each map. This publication allows one to view the work as a whole, making one more sensitive to its temporal dimension.

Set of 12 volumes – Total of 4,740 pages

I MET

On Kawara I MET 2004 12 volumes in grey wooden slipcase consisting of postcards recording the date, name and the

address of both recipient and artist during May 10, 1968 and September 17, 1979
Volume size:  8 1/4 x 5 7/8 inches each  (21 x 14.8 cm each)
Slipcase size:  20 x 7 1/2 x 10 inches  (51.2 x 19.2 x 25.8 cm)
Edition of 90
Signatures are double-stitched with linen thread
(Inventory #30231)

I MET is one of the three parts of the trilogy by On Kawara

During twelve years, from May 10, 1968 to Septembere 17, 1979, On Kawara noted every day the names of the people with whom he conversed in chronological order. This work was published as a twelve-volume edition. On each page, the list of names appears together with the day’s stamp in the footnote. Geographical location changes are signaled by grey page dividers with the city’s name. Raising fundamental questions regarding name, encounter, time or space, I MET creates a poetry of the moment by provoking the feeling that each day is like an empty page before it is transcribed in book-matter.

Set of 12 volumes – Total of 4,790 pages

Exhibition View – ONE MILLION YEARS

On Kawara Exhibition View – ONE MILLION YEARS

One Million Years Past – For all those who lived and died Future – For the last one

On Kawara One Million Years Past – For all those who lived and died Future – For the last one 1999 Two volumes printed on Bible Veritable Ivory Paper 32 g

with covers in black leather over 400 g cardboard with silver and gold embossing on the front and spine.
Edition of 570
5 3/4 x 4 1/8 inches  (144 x 105 mm)
(Inventory #BK.17198)

The first volume, Past – For all those who have lived and died, starts in 998031 BC and ends in 1969 AD, namely One Million Years later. At this date starts the One Million Years in the oeuvre of On Kawara, transcribed here for this edition on 2000 pages. The second volume, Future – For the last one, starts in 1993 AD and ends One Million Years later, in 1001992. This period is equally transcribed for the edition on 2000 pages.

The text of each page is laid out in 10 columns, rigorously aligned and subdivided in 5 blocks of 100 years. Each block contains 10 lines and each line contains a decennium. The two volumes of the book correspond, their internal organization is identical.

Set of 2 volumnes – 2012 pages per volume – Total of 4, 024 pages

Exhibition View – I READ

On Kawara Exhibition View – I READ

I READ

On Kawara I READ 2017 Set of six volumes bound in Brillianta Linen, total of 3,272 pages printed on 130 g Lessobo Design

1.3 Natural paper and accompanied with natural wooden box
11 1/4 x 9 x 2 inches each  (28.6 x 23.1 x 5.1 cm each)
Edition of 50
Signatures are double-stitched with linen thread
(Inventory #30071)

Unlike the three parts of the Trilogy, I GOT UP, I WENT and I MET, published respectively in 2008, 2007 and 2004, I READ by On Kawara is not a daily work but is connected to the Today Series, artwork gathering all the Date Paintings realized from 1966 to the eve of the death of the artist, in 2014.

If I READ also begins in 1966 and stops in 1995, the publishing of I READ post-mortem respects the last will of the artist to pursue the work until his death.

On both sides of each of the 3,272 lined paper sheets that make up the piece, On Kawara has meticulously pasted annotated and dated press cuttings. Pages are filled with juxtaposed or layered articles from daily newspapers. There are no apparent links between the cuttings themselves besides the date on which the events related took place, meaning the dates on the selected newspapers occasionally differ slightly from the one written on the top of the page belonging to I READ. Each sheet corresponds to a day when On Kawara completed a Date Painting. I READ is thus directly linked to the Today Series and each page is corresponding to a Date Painting. The artist’s interest in world news as well as the rhythm of the work of painting by On Kawara are revealed in I READ.

Set of 6 volumes – Total of 3,272 pages

Vol. 1 = 544 pages – The first volume begins on October 2, 1966 and ends on May 15, 1968

Vol. 2 = 544 pages – The second volume begins on May 16, 1968 and ends on February 24, 1971

Vol. 3 = 548 pages – The third volume begins on February 25, 1971 and ends on December 20, 1974

Vol. 4 = 544 pages – The fourth volume begins on December 21, 1974 and ends on December 21, 1980

Vol. 5 = 548 pages – The fifth volume begins on December 28, 1980 and ends on March 27, 1989

Vol. 6 = 544 pages – The sixth volume begins on april 9, 1989 and ends on December 28, 1995

Exhibition View

On Kawara Exhibition View

Exhibition View

On Kawara Exhibition View

Exhibition View

On Kawara Exhibition View

Exhibition View

On Kawara Exhibition View