Rie Nakajima is one of the most experimental artists working in the UK. Fusing sculpture and sound, her artistic practice is open to chance and the influence of others, raising important questions about the definition of art. Nakajima makes pieces often in direct response to architectural space, using a combination of kinetic devices, musical instruments and found objects. Ikon’s exhibition consists entirely of new work and includes a number of performances in collaboration with other artists.
Born in Yokohama, Japan, in 1976, Nakajima lives and works in London, and is very active especially in the area of sound art, often featuring in the programme for Cafe OTO, Dalston. Her performative collaborations take the form of experiments with small objects spread out on the floor, whereby she accumulates or subtracts sound by setting the objects in motion, picking them up and moving them around. For Ikon, Nakajima has curated a series of free performances, also involving herself.
The artist made a number of visits to Birmingham in preparation for her exhibition – short residencies at Ikon saw her gather found objects from the surrounding Brindleyplace estate whilst familiarising herself with the gallery architecture. She combined the objects, largely made from concrete and metal, to make new kinetic assemblages; vehicles for a sonic adventure with an unknown destination.
The exhibition is accompanied by a limited edition box, curated by Rie Nakajima. The edition includes contributions of writing, drawing and photography from participating artists: Pierre Berthet, Max Eastley, Akira Sakata, David Toop and Keiko Yamamoto.