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Art Space Tokyo: An intimate guide to the Tokyo art world

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Music for a Rainy Day at Jun Aoki’s Sonorium

On Sunday, I made two great discoveries. Taka Ishii Gallery was holding a music event in the name of the gallery’s magazine ‘Fun Palace’ at the Jun Aoki-designed concert hall “sonorium” in Eifukucho.

I had never heard of the sonorium before, so it was a fantastic surprise to walk into such a serene, white, chapel-like space, nestled into a residential area. If it were a gallery, there is no doubt that it would have been featured in Art Space Tokyo. Anyone want to make Music Space Tokyo?

Throughout Sunday afternoon, a listening session was held for a recording of Morton Feldman’s composition String Quartet No.2. As it was being played in its full six-hour length, visitors were allowed to come and go as they pleased, and I arrived for the last hour. While I enjoyed Feldman’s minimal musings enough, it was really the following live performance by Swedish musician David Wenngren (aka “Library Tapes") that was so breathtaking.

Wenngren combines light, meditative piano chords and melodies with the hissing and humming static of field recordings. Against this gentle white noise, uplifting sweeps of strings work their way into his compositions — the perfect soundtrack for the pouring rain outside. You can hear plenty of sample tracks on his MySpace and pages. I also recommend that any music and architecture lovers in Tokyo check out the sonorium.

‘Fun Palace’ is also an interesting bilingual journal of articles and interviews relating to contemporary art in its broadest sense, transcending genres. You can pick up the first issue at Taka Ishii Gallery, and the second issue, which will focus on dance, is due to be released this summer.

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A place to keep abreast of Art Space Tokyo related news, reviews, events and updates.

Art Space Tokyo is a 272 page guide to the Tokyo art world produced and published by Craig Mod & PRE/POST.

It was originally published in 2008 by Chin Music Press.

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