Joanna Rajkowska at Contemporary Art Center, Art Tower Mito, Japan

When? Where? By Whom? For Whom? Why? How? Thinking about Caring and Motherhood through Contemporary Art
Contemporary Art Center, Art Tower Mito
Saturday, February 18 – Sunday, May 7, 2023

Curated by Oko Goto (Curator, Contemporary Art Center, Art Tower Mito)

People receive care in various phases within their lives and also face opportunities to become caregivers themselves. Care is indeed a concept that should be positioned at the core of society, as Eva Feder Kittay stated, “no culture that endures beyond one generation can secure itself against the claims of human dependency.” However, in the development of modern society that prioritizes rationalism and quantitative productivity, the practice of care (and the many women who serve as providers of it) has remained far too indiscernible and unobtrusive. Furthermore, biases against care tie women to their homes through the privatization of care work in tandem with the gendered division of labor in the modern family. Even today, when the industrial structure has undergone dramatic shifts and women’s social empowerment is promoted, it becomes a factor that imposes heavier and multiplied responsibilities to women, who are expected to juggle paid work, housework and care work. Added to which, in a society based on neoliberalism self-determination and self-responsibility are emphasized, and there is a growing tendency to make people responsible for their own care. In response to this situation, the artists observe contemporary society and listen to people’s voices, sometimes from the standpoint of those who participate in the practice of care.

The artists in this exhibition observe such situations of contemporary society, sometimes from the standpoint of those who participate in the practice of care. These artists’ works challenge the status quo and question the meaning of struggles within the ambivalence of self-other boundary in care work. The exhibition also aims to devise exhibition environments that are more welcoming and easily accessible to those visiting with the needs of care.

The exhibition will seek the possibilities of empowerment through works of contemporary artists and the placemaking that strengthens the connection between the public and care.

Organized by Mito Arts Foundation

With the support of The Kao Foundation for Arts and Sciences, Nomura Foundation, Daiwa Anglo-Japanese, Foundation, Danish Arts Foundation

Supported by British Council, Royal Danish Embassy, Korean Cultural Center, Korean Embassy in Japan

source: arttowermito.or.jp