It was a battle against ovarian cancer that inspired Japanese artist Chiharu Shiota’s blockbuster exhibition at Brisbane’s Gallery of Modern Art.
Chiharu Shiota : The Soul Trembles is a ticketed show which opens Saturday and runs until October 3.
This blockbuster will fill the ground floor of the gallery with Shiota’s extraordinary large scale installations renowned for featuring red and black threads woven into massive, intoxicating artworks that will make Instagrammers very happy indeed.
QAGOMA director Chris Saines says the immersive artworks draw on “deeply personal emotions and experiences to give visual form to intangible concepts such as memories, anxiety, dreams and silence”.
Shiota, 50, who is now based in Berlin, has been here for the past two weeks with her team helping install the works and she explains how the exhibition, which has been organised and toured by Japan’s Mori Art Museum, got its name.
“I got ovarian cancer and had surgery and chemotherapy and everything,” she explains. “I was thinking about where I would be going when my body dies. I have a young daughter (Hanna, who is now 14) and I was thinking about her too.”
Hence, The Soul Trembles. But she survived and is fine now so the exhibition, which also includes sculpture, video performance, photography, drawing and set design, is ultimately a life affirming one which is both thoughtful and joyous and is accompanied by a free, specially commissioned project in the Children’s Art Centre at GOMA