Giacometti and Japanese Sculpture

March 13, 1998 - April 25, 1998

Yoshii Gallery announces its forthcoming exhibition, Giacometti and Japanese Sculpture, to be held March 13 to April 25, 1998.

This show, which coincides with the third annual International Asian Art Fair in New York, presents two masterpiece sculptures from Eastern and Western cultures, dating from the Early Nara (Hakuho) period (7th century A.D.) and the 20th Century, respectively.

On view in the first gallery is Nu Debout III, 1953 by Alberto Giacometti (1901-1966).  This exceptional bronze of a standing female figure is modeled with a highly textured surface and bears the hypnotic gaze and strict frontal pose characteristic of many of the artist’s figures from the late 1940s and early 1950s.  Yet, in contrast to her emaciated predecessors, this woman possesses a highly sensuous form, realized with a narrow waist, broad shoulders and hips, and exemplifies a particularly stunning bronze from Giacometti’s most productive period.

The second gallery features the Standing Figure of Bosatsu from the Early Nara (Hakuho) period (7th century A.D.), a rare and important gilt bronze dating to the early period of the Buddhist religion in Japan.  The image of the Bosatsu (Sanskrit: Bodisattva) represents a deity who has vowed to postpone its own enlightenment until all beings have been saved from suffering.  The figure stands on a lotus pedestal with hips slightly bent, and offers its right hand forward and open while holding the left arm pendant.  The face bears a serene expression with eyes slightly downcast.  Though similar in its formal characteristics to other pieces of this period, the extraordinary treatment of the skirt highlights this as a truly distinctive work of art.  Only four bronzes dating from this period and of this fine quality exist in the United States; three are in museum collections and one is owned privately.

Visitors to the exhibition are invited to consider the inner beauty of these sculptures, without drawing comparisons that might be immediately evident.  Each sculpture will be displayed in a speciality constructed enviornment with distinct lighting.  Nu debout III will be exhibited in natural light while the second gallery will be transformed into a traditional atmosphere in which to view the Standing FIgure of Bosatsu.

Yoshii Gallery is honored to produce this exhibition with Koichi Yanagi of Yanagi Oriental Fine Arts, one of the leading Oriental Fine Arts dealers in the world.

Yoshii Gallery has shown great interest in the work of Alberto Giacometti, devoting two exhibitions to the artist in six years.  Giacometti Drawings (1992) featured works from 1935 to 1937 and Alberto Giacometti Early Works in Paris presented in 1994, profiled the artist’s first work in Paris from the period 1922-1930.