1970. Item #90996
Bijutsu Techō 美術手帖
Bijutsu Shuppansha 美術出版社
21 x 14.5cm October 1970 issue of Bijutsu Techō 美術手帖, a Japanese art magazine (lit. “fine art notebook”) that was first published in 1948 and continues today. 276 pages of Japanese text, black and white photo reproductions and advertisements. Cover artwork is an artistic image of a woman in front of a red background, attributed to Masayoshi Sukita, with the title above it in red. Next to the title are two of the topics covered inside - エドヴァルド・ムンク [Edvard Munch] and “ROCK IS”, on popular rock music.
Of particular interest is an article on pp. 192-201, which features a story on the art group ニルヴァーナ (Nirvaana), entitled “人間復興を求めて-「もの」をつくらない作家たち” Ningen Fukko o Motomete - “Mono” o Tsukuranai Sakkatachi [In Search of Human Reconstruction: Artists Who Don’t Create “Things”]. The article mentions that the genesis of their name, Nirvaana, comes from the first two characters when the Sanskrit word Nirvaana is written in Japanese; ニル “niru” or “nil,” being the latin root for “nothing.” The story is accompanied by seven black and white photo illustrations, four of which show the group in the process of creating an installation. The article quotes a poster from an exhibition in which the group participated. The exhibition was held from August 12 - 14th, 1970, at Kyōto-shi Bijutsukan 京都市美術館 [Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art], one of the oldest art museums in Japan (renamed Kyōto-shi Kyosera Bijutsukan 京都市京セラ美術館 Kyoto KYOCERA Museum of Art in 2020).
The art group Nirvaana (also Nirvana, Nilvana, Nil Vana) was begun by Japanese conceptual artist Matsuzawa Yutaka 松澤宥 (1922-2006). Originally a student of mathematics and science, he also studied Esoteric Indian Buddhism and was familiar with Sanskrit. He spearheaded the 1970 exhibition, which was entitled, “ニルヴァーナ ー最後美術のために” Nirvaana - Saigo Bijutsu no Tameni [Nirvaana - For A Final Art].
Matsuzawa set up the exhibit physically to express the literal definition of the Sanskrit word Nirvana, known as a place where all heavenly desires are extinguished. On the first day of the exhibit the exhibition took up two floors, on the second day it halved to one floor and the third day it was held in just one room, whereupon it ended. There were 85 artists from Japan, the US, Canada, the UK and Europe, who participated by invitation. An established artist and known as the father of Japanese conceptual art, a number of his works are held by MOMA in New York City.
Included in the article (p. 195) are three artistic photos of ジョン べルでッサリ [John Baldessari 1931 – 2020], a painter at the time who had begun experimenting with film and video and later became known for his work as a conceptual artist.
Small chip on the top edge of p. 192. Wear to edges of cover at binding with some dust staining. Interior is in good condition.