© Foundation Tichy Ocean

MT inv. no.: 5-6-139
18 x 12.8 cm
courtesy of Taka Ishii Gallery and the Foundation Tichy Ocean

Miroslav Tichy

Taka Ishii Gallery is pleased to announce the debut exhibition in Japan of artist Miroslav Tichy. Born in 1926, in the present-day Czech Republic, Tichy is an embodiment of the myth of the artist/genius. "Discovered" by curator Harald Szeemann, who organized a presentation of Tichy's works at the First International Biennial of Contemporary Art of Seville (Spain, 2004), Tichy has since been the focus of museum exhibitions including the Kunsthaus Zurich (Switzerland, 2005) and De Hallen, Frans Hals Museum (Haarlem, the Netherlands, 2006) with upcoming exhibitions (all 2008) including the Centre Pompidou (Paris, France), the Museum of Modern Art Frankfurt (Germany) and the Douglas Hyde Gallery (Dublin, Ireland).

As a student of painting at the Academy of Art, Prague, Tichy early came into conflict with the Communist government and was forced to abandon his studies and spend a number of years in both prisons and mental hospitals. Neither a criminal nor insane, Tichy's rebellious nature was simply ill-suited to his environment. Perhaps as a result of such oppression, Tichy subsequently developed a highly individual approach towards art practice and life-in-general. Never again to leave his home city of Kyjov, Tichy turned from painting proper to a form of photography. Basing his life on an ethic of skepticism, Tichy followed an outwardly impoverished path, his physical appearance and home a shambles, and this extended to the means whereby which he produced his photographs. Utilizing bits of junk and scraps as well as old, discarded cameras, Tichy incorporated the practice of photography into his daily life, following no particular plan or rule other than to take a number of photographs within a given period of time.

A primary, though not sole, focus of Tichy's daily observations was the female form. Literally thousands of black and white images were created and serve as a record of Tichy's life-long vision. Weathered over time and maintained in decidedly non-archival conditions, the photographs physical condition mirror their out-of-focus, hazy content. Oftentimes a trace of drawing remains as Tichy would, without hesitation, alter images with pencil and create make-shift frames from colored paper. Melancholy and romantic, the photographs re-present an extremely sensual inner life of the artist.

The Taka Ishii gallery exhibition will include a series of 29 vintage prints as well as a presentation of one of the artist's hand-crafted cameras and will be accompanied by the publication of a bilingual catalogue produced in cooperation with the Tichy Ocean Foundation.

Exhibition: October 6 - November 2, 2007
Opening hours: Tues-Sat 11 am - 7 pm

Taka Ishii Gallery
1-3-2-5F Kiyosumi, Koto-ku
J-Tokyo #135-0024
Telephone +81(0)3 5646 6050
Fax +81(0)3 3642 3067
Email tig@takaishiigallery.com