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Decoration never dies, anyway

Decoration has always existed together in hand with mankind. Beginning with rituals mourning the deceased and tattoos associated with sorcery, although on occasion rendered a mere formality, it is that which has continued to persist while repeatedly undergoing changes and harboring new meanings in correspondence to the times. Decoration could indeed be described as being constantly in flux, in an endless cycle of transmigration. This exhibition features seven artists whom are all different in age, nationality, and genre. The means of expression they employ are diverse, including a trailer adorned with Gothic decoration, carpets that mix together patterns derived from various cultural spheres, and paintings that through the façade of windows imagines the life and personalities of the people who live there. In their works the artists juxtapose entirely differ-ent epochs and values, imagine worlds that do not actually exist, and attempt to interpret the concept of “decoration” as it exists in the context of daily life. In observing their endeavors, we as viewers recognize that the act of decoration is indeed the essential key to perceiving the vivid and complex reality that inextricably surrounds us. After all, “Decoration never dies, anyway.”

Visiting Information


Saturday, November 18, 2017– Sunday, February 25, 2018


Main building + Gallery 1, Annex


Closed on 2nd & 4th Wednesdays (November.22, December.13, January.10, 24, February.14)
December.27 - January.4

Opening Times:

10:00–18:00 (Last admission: 17:30)
Nov.23, 24, 25 late-night opening until 20:00 (Last admission 19:30)


  General Advance/Group
Adults General¥1,100 Advance/Group¥880
College and vocational students General¥880 Advance/Group¥700
Junior high and high school students General¥550 Advance/Group¥440
Senior(65 and over) General¥550 Advance/Group¥440

・Admission is free for elementary and younger students and for middle school students residing or going to schools in Tokyo.
・Admission is free for visitors (and one accompanying person) with a Physical Disability Certificate, Intellectual Disability Certificate, Rehabilitation Certificate, Mental Disability Certificate, or Atomic Bomb Survivor's Certificate.
・Admission is free for seniors (65 and above) on the third Wednesday of each month.
・Pre-purchased tickets are available online from e+:

Photography is encourtaged

but please be sure…

・Please be considerate of others when you take a photo.

・Please do not use flash, reflectors, unipod/tripod, selfie stick or telephoto lens with camera

・Security guards protect you and the artworks. Please respect their request.

・Please do not take a movie in the facility.

・For non-commercial and private use only

・When disclosing the photos, please be reminded not to infringe the other visitors' rights of publicity.

Organized by

Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture,
Tokyo Metropolitan Teien Art Museum

Supported by

British Council, Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Embassy of the Kingdom of Belgium, Arts Flanders Japan, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Royal Thai Embassy in Japan

Cooperation with


With the co-sponsorship of

Toda Cooperation

Programs and Events

    –The Lifeline of Decoration

    20 January, Sat. 13:00-18:00

    Live streaming program by Naohiro Ukawa

    Venue:Annex Gallery 2, Tokyo Metropolitan Teien Art Museum

    Seating capacity:90

    Pre-registration required (available on TTM website from 20→25 Dec.)
    Free with museum admission

  • Artist Talks

    18 November, Sat. 13:00−

    Short presentation by participating artists (with simultaneous interpreting English-Japanese)

    Venue:Annex Gallery 2, Tokyo Metropolitan Teien Art Museum

    Seating capacity:120

    Pre-registration required (available on TTM website from 18 Oct.)
    Free with museum admission

    Wim Delvoye

    Makiko Yamamoto

    Nynke Koster

    Yoshikazu Yamagata

    Akiko & Masako Takada

    Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook

    Kour Pour

Top: Wim Delvoye Nautilus (scale model 1/3) 2013, © Studio Wim Delvoye, Belgium; Wim Delvoye Untitled (Car Tyre) 2007 © Studio Wim Delvoye, Belgium; Makiko Yamamoto Makiko Yamamoto Window (London, Camden Town) 2010, from the series "Through the windows"
Second: Nynke Koster Elements of time 2015, photo: David in den Bosch; Nynke Koster Elements of time 2015, photo: David in den Bosch

Third:Yoshikazu Yamagata, writtenafterwards - flowers II, 2017AW, photo: Kenshu Shintsubo; Yoshikazu Yamagata, writtenafterwards - THE SEVEN GODS - clothes from chaos, 2012
Fourth:Akiko & Masako Takada Cut Glass 2014; Akiko & Masako Takada Trump Card 2011 Private collection Photo: Hideto Nagatsuka
Bottom:Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook Thai Medley II, 2002; Kour Pour All The King's Horses, And All The king's Men 2013, private collection; Kour Pour Holy Mountain 2014, private collection


Wim Delvoye(1965-)

Belgian artist Wim Delvoye borrows decorative elements from Gothic cathedrals and reworks them in intricate laser-cut steel sculptures with modern contexts, such as a flat-bed trailer. In addition to this Gothic series, he will exhibit works from his Tyre and Suitcase series.

Makiko Yamamoto(1979-)

Makiko Yamamoto, from Japan, draws the windows of stranger's homes, using her imagination to create lives and personalities for the people who live within. She then pulls the residents into her work, inviting them to recreate the scenes she has imagined for them.

Nynke Koster(1986-)

Dutch artist Nynke Koster takes molds of interior pieces of historical buildings and creates from them art/design works such as "stools" that visitors can sit upon. She will create a new work especially for this exhibition, which is her first in Japan.

Yoshikazu Yamagata(1980-)

Japanese fashion designer Yoshikazu Yamagata creates art that is worn on the body but transcends the boundaries of fashion. One work, a circular dress with embroidered flowers, was inspired by the wreath former U.S. President Barack Obama laid at the Peace Memorial in Hiroshima in 2016.

Akiko & Masako Takada(1978-)

Twins Akiko & Masako Takada, from Japan, create as a team, taking inexpensive and everyday items such as suction cups and pumice stones and transforming them, with intricate handwork and vast imagination, into suggestions of very different and often precious objects.

Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook(1957-)

Thai artist Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook seeks, in a video installation, to close the perceived gap between the living and the dead, and ourselves and others. Visiting morgues, she decorates the corpses of strangers with floral-print fabric. She and others then read the corpses love poems in classical Thai.

Kour Pour(1987-)

Los Angeles-based Kour Pour was born in Britian, where his Iranian father restored Persian carpets. He paints large and colorful canvases that look like fine antique carpets but with unexpected juxtapositions from other cultures and times.