Lisson Gallery

Tatsuo Miyajima

Tatsuo Miyajima is one of Japan’s foremost sculptors and installation artists. Employing contemporary materials such as electric circuits, video, and computers, Miyajima’s supremely technological works have centred on his use of digital light-emitting diode (LED) counters, or ‘gadgets’ as he calls them, since the late 1980s. These numbers, flashing in continual and repetitious – though not necessarily sequential – cycles from 1 to 9, represent the journey from life to death, the finality of which is symbolized by ‘0’ or the zero point, which consequently never appears in his work. This theory derives partially from humanist ideas, the teachings of Buddhism, as well as from his core artistic concepts: ‘Keep Changing’, ‘Connect with All’, and ‘Goes on Forever’. Miyajima’s LED numerals have been presented in grids, towers, complex integrated groupings or circuits and as simple digital counters, but are all aligned with his interests in continuity, connection and eternity, as well as with the flow and span of time and space. "Time connects everything", says Miyajima. "I want people to think about the universe and the human spirit."

Tatsuo Miyajima was born in 1957 and lives and works in Ibaraki, Japan. He finished undergraduate and postgraduate studies at the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music in 1986, after which he began experimenting with performance art before moving on to light-based installations. In addition to participating in numerous international biennales and important group shows, he has held solo exhibitions at Minsheng Musuem, Shanghai, China; Buchmann Galerie, Lugano, Switzerland (2019); Lisson Gallery, New York, NY, USA (2018); William Morris Gallery, London, UK (2018); Fosun Foundation, Shanghai, China (2017); SCAI The Bathhouse, Tokyo, Japan (2017); MCA, Sydney, Australia (2016); The Met Breuer, New York, NY, USA (2016); Capsule Gallery, Tokyo (2014); Kunstmuseum St Gallen, Switzerland (2012); Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, China (2011); Miyanomori Art Museum, Hokkaido, Japan (2010); San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, CA, USA (1997); Fondation Cartier pour l’Art Contemporain, Paris, France (1996); and Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, TX, USA (1996). He has participated in the Venice Biennale (1988, 1999) and in numerous group exhibitions, including ‘Change Connect Continue’, Galleria Lorcan O’neill Roma, Italy (2019); ‘The Life of Buddha, the way to now’, Nieuwe Kerk, Amsterdam, Netherlands (2018); ‘Catastrophe and the Power of Art’, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan (2018); ‘Everything at Once’, The Store, London, UK (2017); ‘Relight Days’, Counter Void, Tokyo, Japan (2017); 'Kumamoto Admirable', Contemporary Art Museum Kumamoto, Japan (2016); 'Order and Reorder: Curate Your Own Exhibition', National Museum of Modern Art Kyoto (MOMAK), Japan (2016); 'Eppur Si Muove', Mudam Luxembourg (2015); 'Boolean Expressions', Lewis Gluckman Gallery, Ireland (2015); 'Logical Emotion, Contemporary Art from Japan', Museum Haus Konstruktiv, Zurich, Switzerland (2014); 'Asia Code ZERO', Seoul Olympic Museum of Art, Seoul, Korea (2013); 'Marking Time', Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, Australia (2012); and 'Dome', Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Japan (2008). In 2006, Miyajima was selected to serve as Vice President of Tohoku University of Art and Design. His work is featured in numerous public collections including British Museum, London, UK; Tate, London, UK; La Caixa, Barcelona, Spain; National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa; and Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Taiwan.  

Innumerable Life/Buddha CCIƆƆ-01

Tatsuo Miyajima
Innumerable Life/Buddha CCIƆƆ-01, 2018
Light Emitting Diode, IC, electric wire, steel, stainless, Transformer. LED type "Time Hundred" (Red) 100 plates 251.7 x 251.7 x 15 cm 99 x 99 x 5 7/8 in

Innumerable Life/Buddha CCIƆƆ-01

Tatsuo Miyajima
Innumerable Life/Buddha CCIƆƆ-01, 2018
Light Emitting Diode, IC, electric wire, steel, stainless, Transformer. LED type "Time Hundred" (Red) 100 plates 251.7 x 251.7 x 15 cm 99 x 99 x 5 7/8 in

Innumerable Life/Buddha MMD-01

Tatsuo Miyajima
Innumerable Life/Buddha MMD-01, 2018
Light Emitting Diode, IC, electric wire, steel, stainless, Transformer. LED type "Time Hundred" (Red) 25 plates 126.5 x 126.5 x 10 cm 49 3/4 x 49 3/4 x 3 7/8 in

Innumerable Life/Buddha MMD-01

Tatsuo Miyajima
Innumerable Life/Buddha MMD-01, 2018
Light Emitting Diode, IC, electric wire, steel, stainless, Transformer. LED type "Time Hundred" (Red) 25 plates 126.5 x 126.5 x 10 cm 49 3/4 x 49 3/4 x 3 7/8 in

Innumerable Life/Buddha MMD-01

Tatsuo Miyajima
Innumerable Life/Buddha MMD-01, 2018
Light Emitting Diode, IC, electric wire, steel, stainless, Transformer. LED type "Time Hundred" (Red) 25 plates 126.5 x 126.5 x 10 cm 49 3/4 x 49 3/4 x 3 7/8 in

Time Waterfall

Tatsuo Miyajima
Time Waterfall, 2018
Computer graphics, LED display 336 x 64 x 32 cm 132 1/4 x 25 1/8 x 12 1/2 in

Counter Painting on Chinese dress - Gold

Tatsuo Miyajima
Counter Painting on Chinese dress - Gold, 2017
Acrylic (Liquitex PRIME Acrylic Bright Gold) on Chinese dress of Qing Dynasty 73.2 x 134.5 cm 28 7/8 x 53 in Framed: 95.5 x 161 x 5 cm Framed: 37 5/8 x 63 3/8 x 2 in

Counter Painting on Chinese dress - Gold

Tatsuo Miyajima
Counter Painting on Chinese dress - Gold, 2017
Acrylic (Liquitex PRIME Acrylic Bright Gold) on Chinese dress of Qing Dynasty 73.2 x 134.5 cm 28 7/8 x 53 in Framed: 95.5 x 161 x 5 cm Framed: 37 5/8 x 63 3/8 x 2 in

Counter Painting on Chinese dress - Gold

Tatsuo Miyajima
Counter Painting on Chinese dress - Gold, 2017
Acrylic (Liquitex PRIME Acrylic Bright Gold) on Chinese dress of Qing Dynasty 73.2 x 134.5 cm 28 7/8 x 53 in Framed: 95.5 x 161 x 5 cm Framed: 37 5/8 x 63 3/8 x 2 in

Counter Painting on Chinese dress - Orange

Tatsuo Miyajima
Counter Painting on Chinese dress - Orange, 2017
Acrylic (Holbein Acrylic Cadmium Orange) on Chinese dress of Qing Dynasty 77.8 x 131.4 cm 30 5/8 x 51 3/4 in Framed: 95.5 x 151 x 5 cm Framed: 37 5/8 x 59 1/2 x 2 in

Counter Painting on Chinese dress - Orange

Tatsuo Miyajima
Counter Painting on Chinese dress - Orange, 2017
Acrylic (Holbein Acrylic Cadmium Orange) on Chinese dress of Qing Dynasty 77.8 x 131.4 cm 30 5/8 x 51 3/4 in Framed: 95.5 x 151 x 5 cm Framed: 37 5/8 x 59 1/2 x 2 in

Over Economy by Chinese Yuan 3,600

Tatsuo Miyajima
Over Economy by Chinese Yuan 3,600, 2016
Pencil and acrylic on Chinese RMB bills 36 parts: 44 x 33.5 x 5.5 cm each 17 3/8 x 13 1/4 x 2 1/4 in each

Over Economy by Chinese Yuan 3,600 (detail)

Tatsuo Miyajima
Over Economy by Chinese Yuan 3,600 (detail), 2016
Pencil and acrylic on Chinese RMB bills 36 parts: 44 x 33.5 x 5.5 cm each 17 3/8 x 13 1/4 x 2 1/4 in each

Time Waterfall

Tatsuo Miyajima
Time Waterfall, 2016
Computer graphics, LED display Commission for Art Basel and the International Commerce Centre, Hong Kong Image courtesy the artist and Art Basel

Arrow of Time (Unfinished Life)

Tatsuo Miyajima
Arrow of Time (Unfinished Life), 2015
Installation view, The Met Breuer, New York, NY, USA

The Moon in the Ground

Tatsuo Miyajima
The Moon in the Ground, 2014
Plastic coated waterproof Light Emitting Diode, IC, electric wire, stainless mirror, iron Diameter 200 cm x 23.5 cm Diameter 78.7 in x 9.3 in

Life (Corps sans Organes) No.8

Tatsuo Miyajima
Life (Corps sans Organes) No.8, 2013

L.E.D., IC, microcomputer by Ikegami program, Steel, Plastic cover, passive sensor, electric wire,  LED type; Life D-R(3), Life D-BL(3), Life D-W(2), Life D-PG(0), Life G-R(2), Life G-BL(2), Life G-W(2), Life G-PG(2) 190.2 x 145.5 x 11.0 cm / 75 x 57 3/8 x 4 3/8 in

Life (Corps sans Organes) No.11

Tatsuo Miyajima
Life (Corps sans Organes) No.11, 2013

L.E.D., IC, microcomputer by Ikegami program, Steel, Plastic cover, passive sensor, electric wire,  LED type; Life D-R(6), Life D-BL(2), Life D-W(1), Life D-PG(4), Life G-R(6), Life G-BL(6), Life G-W(2), Life G-PG(3) 190.2 x 242.0 x 11.0 cm / 75 x 95 3/8 x 4 3/8 in

Life (Corps sans Organes) No.3

Tatsuo Miyajima
Life (Corps sans Organes) No.3, 2013

L.E.D., IC, microcomputer by Ikegami program, Steel, Plastic cover, passive sensor, electric wire,  LED type; Life D-R(1), Life D-BL(2), Life D-W(0), Life D-PG(2), Life G-R(4), Life G-BL(4), Life G-W(2), Life G-PG(1) 106.5 x 198.7 x 11.0 cm / 42 x 78 1/4 x 4 3/8 in

Life (rhizome) No.16

Tatsuo Miyajima
Life (rhizome) No.16, 2013
L.E.D., IC, microcomputer by Ikegami program, steel, plastic cover, passive sensor, electric wire, LED type; Life G-R(19), Life G-BL(11), Life G- EG(18), Life G-Y(13) Life G-W(2), Life G-PG(7) 68.5 _ 98.5 x 4.0 cm 27 38.8 x 1.6 in

Life Palace (tea room) (detail)

Tatsuo Miyajima
Life Palace (tea room) (detail), 2013
L.E.D., IC, microcomputer by Ikegami program, wood, steel, passive sensor, electric wire, LED type; Life G-BL 152 pieces 258.8 x 321.6 x 321.6 cm 101.9 x 126.6 x 126.6 in

Life Palace (tea room)

Tatsuo Miyajima
Life Palace (tea room), 2013
L.E.D., IC, microcomputer by Ikegami program, wood, steel, passive sensor, electric wire, LED type; Life G-BL 152 pieces 258.8 x 321.6 x 321.6 cm 101.9 x 126.6 x 126.6 in

C.F. Brain no. 4

Tatsuo Miyajima
C.F. Brain no. 4, 2009

LED, power supply transformer, electric wire, stainless flame 38 x 22 x 48 cm / 15 x 8 5/8 x 19 in

HOTO

Tatsuo Miyajima
HOTO, 2008
L.E.D., IC controller, electric wire,
specular finished stainless steel, mirror glass, prexi glass detail 549 cm high x 208 cm diameter / 216 in high x 82 in diameter

HOTO

Tatsuo Miyajima
HOTO, 2008
L.E.D., IC controller, electric wire,
specular finished stainless steel, mirror glass, prexi glass detail 549 cm high x 208 cm diameter / 216 in high x 82 in diameter

Pile up Life no. 5 - Katrina

Tatsuo Miyajima
Pile up Life no. 5 - Katrina, 2008
LED, firebrick, mortar, electric wire, power supply transformer, wooden pallet 84 x 64 x 64 cm / 33 x 25 1/4 x 25 1/4 in

C.F Lifestructurism - no.5

Tatsuo Miyajima
C.F Lifestructurism - no.5, 2008

LED, IC, electric wire 71.5 x 91.3 cm / 28 x 36 in

Counter Window v3-6-01

Tatsuo Miyajima
Counter Window v3-6-01, 2004
Liquid Crystal Glass, IC Time Controller, electric wire, aluminium frame 198.3 x 134 x 8.6 cm / 78 x 52 7/8 x 3 3/8 in

Pile up Life no. 1 - Katrina

Tatsuo Miyajima
Pile up Life no. 1 - Katrina, 2008
LED, firebrick, mortar, electric wire, power supply transformer, wooden pallet 103.9 x 119.7 x 120.1 cm / 41 x 47 x 47 3/8 in

Pile up Life no. 1 - Katrina

Tatsuo Miyajima
Pile up Life no. 1 - Katrina, 2008
LED, firebrick, mortar, electric wire, power supply transformer, wooden pallet 103.9 x 119.7 x 120.1 cm / 41 x 47 x 47 3/8 in

Counter Fragile, No. 22

Tatsuo Miyajima
Counter Fragile, No. 22, 2005
100 LEDs 114 x 88.5 x 50 cm / 45 x 34 7/8 x 19 5/8 in

Time in Water

Tatsuo Miyajima
Time in Water, 2004
Plastic coating waterproof L.E.D, electric wire, IC, aluminium, stainless steel, water and water pump 300 x 300 x 30 cm / 118 x 118 x 11 7/8 in

Time in Water

Tatsuo Miyajima
Time in Water, 2004
Plastic coating waterproof L.E.D, electric wire, IC, aluminium, stainless steel, water and water pump 300 x 300 x 30 cm / 118 x 118 x 11 7/8 in

Counter Void S-1

Tatsuo Miyajima
Counter Void S-1, 2003
Neon, plastic, stainless steel IC controller 231.6 x 167.1 x 60 cm / 91 1/4 x 65 7/8 x 23 5/8 in

Exhibitions

  1. Tatsuo Miyajima: Innumerable Life / Buddha

    Tatsuo Miyajima: Innumerable Life / Buddha

    11 January – 16 February 2019

  2. Tatsuo Miyajima – KU

    Tatsuo Miyajima – KU

    21 November 2014 – 9 January 2015

  3. Tatsuo Miyajima: I-Model

    Tatsuo Miyajima: I-Model

    27 September – 2 November 2013

  4. Tatsuo Miyajima: Pile Up Life

    Tatsuo Miyajima: Pile Up Life

    25 November 2009 – 16 January 2010

  5. Tatsuo Miyajima

    Tatsuo Miyajima

    21 January – 5 March 2005

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