What is Art Brut? The Japanese Premiere of Impulsive, Cutting-edge Artistic Expressions from the Depths of the Human Spirit
This exhibition sets out to introduce the world of European art brut (also known as "outsider art"), providing an invaluable opportunity to better understand the essence of this genre which has become a subject of great interest in Japan in recent years.
The term “art brut” refers to works created by people without any specialized training in the field who are active outside of mainstream culture and society. Focusing on approximately 100 works and related documents from abcd (art brut connaissance and diffusion), a nonprofit organization with one of the world's leading collections of art brut, the exhibition explores themes such as the morphology of living organisms and anatomical transformation in the work of the Czech artists Luboš Plný (Born in Česká Lípa, located in the northern Czech Republic, in 1961) and Anna Zemánková (Born in Olomouc, in the Moravia region of eastern Czech Republic, in 1908; died in 1986). The event marks the first full-fledged introduction to the artists' work ever presented in Japan, and we trust that you will enjoy these powerful expressions that reveal the depths of the human spirit.
In addition, we hope that you will also take this special opportunity to watch the full-length documentary Rouge Ciel, An Essay on Art Brut, which introduces several art brut creators and traces the history of the genre.
What is Art Brut?
The French term "art brut" suggests a raw form of creation or the use of materials in their original state. In English, "outsider art" is also used. Living at some remove from cultural and social institutions, and never having received any specialized training in art, the creators begin making their works for their own satisfaction. Inspired by a psychiatrist who became interested in the creative work of people with mental disorders in the late 19th century, European avant-garde artists came to focus on the trend in the 1920s. In addition to those with mental illnesses, the genre has come to encompass the work of many other types of people, including psychics, those who experience hallucinations, the homeless, the mentally disabled, and elderly people who teach themselves to make art. In recent years, art brut has become an established field of avant-garde art with specialist museums and galleries throughout the world.