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The Mystery of the Teien Dodo

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The first rule of the dodo is that you do not talk about the dodo. If you do not believe me, try searching for the Teien dodo on the Internet. You will not find any written history about the dodo. Good luck in even finding a photograph. It remains one of the greatest art mysteries of all time. I am taking a big risk telling you about what I know. By telling you in such a public manner and ensuring that others know, I hope that my life will be spared. If you do not see any more blog entries after this, you will know why. I dare to speak about the dodo.

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Exhibition News: Ma’arui Hiroba no Kami to Asobu

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Space Galleria in Chiba City is once again holding an invitational group show. Two years ago artists were invited to create their own artwork using digital prints by Takeshi Ishikawa. This year 23 artists have been given sheets of beige recycled paper made from milk cartons. This paper is actually very special, because it was made by people with disabilities at Ma’arui Hiroba (Japanese site) in Chiba City. Participants at Ma’arui Hiroba do more than recycle paper; they also do Ma’arui Hiroba Activities (Japanese site) like the people who were featured in the Art as a Haven for Happiness exhibition.

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Kyobashi Shows

Kyobashi is an area of Tokyo with many small galleries concentrated in a few blocks and is also close to Ginza, another area filled with small galleries. I had never explored the area before but I went to see Keiko Moriuchi’s group show of Gutai art at Hatonomori Art in the Kyoei Bldg and discovered several noteworthy shows nearby.

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Art Deco and Tribal Masks

The trip to the Toguri Art Museum was not the first art tour I had taken with Alice Gordenker. I had taken one the week before at the newly Metropolitan Teien Art Museum. Masks from the Musée du quai Branly in Paris are currently on display in the prince’s old residence. Wow! Beauty overload! How else do I explain the beauty of this Art Deco residence that was custom built by a French architect with French and Japanese craftspeople, including Rene Lalique for one, and that provided an elegant backdrop for the powerful images of the masks from all over the world? If you want a glimpse, Tokyo Dandy and the Asahi Shimbun have a few photos from a tour for the press I assume.

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