GROUND LEVEL, GALLERY 8
JAPAN, BORN 1978
LIVES AND WORKS IN LOS ANGELES
Artist Misaki Kawai presents Moja Moja Life: Misaki Kawai for Kids 2020, an indoor playground featuring a display of colourful furry sculptures of dogs and a puppet making studio. With a love of mimetic word pairings spoken in the Japanese language such as ‘moja moja’ or ‘hairy’ and an interest in children’s creative play and making, Kawai’s exhibition shares her spontaneous and playful approach to creating art with the NGV’s youngest visitors.
Central to the exhibit is Kawai’s larger-than-life hot pink faux fur sculpture of a dog named Arty (based on the briard breed), which is surrounded by a display of dogs, each sporting colourful coats made from different fluffy materials. Adjacent to the display, and inspired by a long history of puppet making, Kawai has designed a set of theatre booths and a puppet activity for children to make and record performances with a multimedia program. Children can then share these creations with friends and family via social media and email.
Misaki Kawai’s exhibitions immerse the viewer in environments made up of paintings on canvas, papier-mâché constructions, drawings on paper and soft faux-fur sculptures. Her bold, colourful paintings and drawings reflect an approach to art making that can be described as heta-uma – a Japanese term used to refer to a good idea combined with little attention given to technique.
Kawai has held exhibitions around the world, including the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston; Malmö Konsthall in Sweden; Children’s Museum of Arts in New York; and the Watari Museum of Contemporary Art in Tokyo. Her works have featured in group exhibitions at MoMA PS1 and Deitch Projects in New York. Kawai has had recent solo exhibitions in New York and Copenhagen, as well as a travelling exhibition in South Korea.
The NGV warmly thanks Triennial Champions Paula Fox AO & Fox Family Foundation, Major Partner Chadstone – The Fashion Capital and Triennial Lead Supporter Neilson Foundation for their support of Moja Moja Life: Misaki Kawai for Kids.
Major Partner Chadstone – The Fashion Capital are proud to support the NGV Triennial and Moja Moja Life: Misaki Kawai for Kids. Families will experience an immersive extension of the NGV Triennial, and enter the colourful and playful world of Misaki Kawai. Discover this unique experience during the January 2021 School Holidays at Chadstone – The Fashion Capital.