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Text of the catalog „Bau und Kunst”

english / deutsch

ARCHITECTURE AND ART

For several years Daisuke Ogura’s installations have focused on Architecture and Art.

Daisuke Ogura`s artistic activities takes place where these two fields overlap. His works explore

the common levels on which architects and sculptors regularly meet. Both, for example, are

constructors, makers, shapers, and creators. And both are guided by the ideas, concepts and

views expressed in their completed works. Moreover, both architect and sculptor are influenced

by factors of essential importance, such as stability and balance, bearing and loads, space and

volume, lines and light.

For Daisuke Ogura the constructed space has become a fundamental source of inspiration.

Basic architectural forms and constructed fragments are recurring features of his pared-down

installations and wall-based artworks. On closer examination, the observer notices that Daisuke

Ogura takes up specific elements - doors, window frames and construction fences, for example,

set pieces that in our day-to-day lives represent dividing lines between the inside and the

outside, the visible and the invisible, the public and the private. But again and again Daisuke

Ogura breaks down these divisions, with doors ajar, window-panes smashed and newspapers

stuck in letter-box flaps on doors. In doing so, the artist highlights how the two disparate areas –

our inner and our outer worlds – permeate each other constantly. External influences impact on

the existential and psychological levels of our personal privacy, and vice versa.

Daisuke Ogura explores the topic of permeation in greater depth by allowing two artistic

movements to influence his style: the abstract expressionism of the 1940s and 50s and the

minimalism of the 1960s. The open and disorderly bundles of wire that recur so often in his

installations and sculptures are first and foremost citations of Jackson Pollock; the precise

geometric constructions are a nod to artists like Donald Judd. The two positions on which

Daisuke Ogura draws could hardly be more contrary. In abstract expressionism gestural

painting is all about itself. Free from any outside references and norms, the artist leaves his

traces on the canvas. The application of paint becomes an artistic act of self-expression, the

canvas offering the freedom to perform. Freedom, subjectivity, intuition and spontaneity are

just some of the notions associated with abstract expressionism, which stands in contrast

with the cool, understated minimalism of Sol LeWitt and Carl Andre or the aforementioned

Donald Judd. Their geometric works stand for calculation, precision, order, objectivity and

one-ness. Daisuke Ogura’s works make conscious reference to these two artistic stances,

which, despite their contrary nature, form two parts of a whole. One could suggest that

abstract expressionism on the one hand and minimalism on the other are symbols of the

polarity inherent in all existence that confronts human beings on a daily basis. Personal

individuality stands in opposition to the collectiveness of a mass society; reason and intellect

wrestle with feelings and emotions; and what would humans be without rationality on the one

hand and imagination and intuition on the other?

Through his works Daisuke Ogura seeks to throw up questions about the essence of

things… , including Art, of course. He asks what is it that gives rise to Art in its most

quintessential form? For Daisuke Ogura this question comes back to human beings themselves.

As thinking, reflective beings, humans exist in this world, and through their actions they form it

and shape it. These two human qualities – thought and action – are in Daisuke Ogura’s view

inscribed into the creative process. Unlike conceptual artists, for whom the notional construct

can represent the final work and who sometimes commission specialist craftspeople to realise

the details, Daisuke Ogura insists that the process leading from pure idea to final work in

material form is a holistic one – a process he believes must lie in the hands of the artist. It is this

process of bringing something into being by forming it with the hands that is so essential to the

works of Daisuke Ogura, which at the same time express his endeavours to achieve

lastingness, quality and spiritual permeation.

Marion von Schabrowsky

Art Historian

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