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Kazz Sasaguchi

"Polar Bear"

28th November (Sat), 2020 – 26th December (Sat), 2020

Hours:12:00~19:00, closed Sundays

Meet the artist:11/28, 12/6, 12/13, 12/20, 12/26

YOD Gallery is honored to present “Polar Bear”, the first solo exhibition by Kazz Sasaguchi in the Kansai area.


Kazz Sasaguchi (b.1962, Tokyo) creates his art by researching real-world data regarding society and places. By compiling this data and visualizing it in unexpected configurations, he presents new ways to examine ‘reality’.


This exhibition is comprised of artworks from Sasaguchi’s “Location Zero” series. After researching data regarding place names and constellations, he transforms this data into a visual presentation by delicate carving on a panel surface. Sasaguchi has coined the term “Location Zero” to refer to the center point of Earth. He designates this location as the point of view so that the surface of the earth and the sky are observed simultaneously from that vantage point. The constellations are carved overlaid with the inversed world map. References to historical place name origins, which are like a record of people’s relationship with locations, are written along with markers that display population size. Lastly, the outlines of constellations are presented according to the luminosity of the individual stars.


The main artwork of this exhibition, “Polar Bear”, features the two bear constellations Ursa Major and Ursa Minor, as seen through the inverted map of the Arctic Ocean. The stars of the constellations, including The Big Dipper, a part of Ursa Major, overlap with the mystical place names of the Arctic Circle, all meticulously carved into the surface of the painting. Typically, Ursa Major is depicted as The Big Dipper forming the hind part of the bear, with the “handle” as a long tail. However, if the image of the bear is inverted, one can imagine a bear with an elongated head and neck, which are characteristic of the polar bear. Therefore one can argue that the Ursa constellations do not depict the usually imagined brown bears, but rather a pair of polar bears.


The artwork “Polar Bear” overlays the map of the Arctic Ocean with the Ursa constellations, imagined as polar bears, drawing our imagination to the animals who thrive in the cold environment, as well as humans who have weathered the harsh conditions to settle the shores and islands in the Arctic Circle since prehistoric times. Through researching place names and constellations, Sasaguchi has formed a thesis that this data can shed light on the minds of ancient humans, and visualizes his research in his artworks for the viewer to consider.


Please join us to see this special exhibition in person.

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