This isn’t a Duchamp, or is it? : Yukio Fujimoto, Yasumasa Morimura

Press Release

November 1 through December 18, 2004
Opening hours: 11AM − 7 PM

Reception: November 1st, 5:00-7:00 PM

MEM presents the two-person show This isn’t a Duchamp, or is it? by Yasumasa Morimura and Yukio Fujimoto featuring collaborative works that pays homage to Marcel Duchamp.

Since the middle of the 1980s, Morimura has been internationally esteemed for his self-portrait series Daughter of Art History, which is centered around the artist’s appropriation of well-known Western paintings. In the 80s, Morimura also produced a series entitled Doublonage based a number of works by Duchamp, including Chocolate Grinder and Fresh Widow.
Fujimoto is a sound artist whose works take many forms, including installation, sculpture, performance and public projects. He was invited to participate in the 2001 Venice Biennnale and showed a sound installation at the Japanese pavilion. Some of Fujimoto’s sound objects and art works reference Duchamp’s concepts, especially the idea of “infra-thin.”

About the edition work by Fujimoto and Morimura
The central work of the exhibition is an edition work based on L.H.O.O.Q. Shaved by Duchamp in 1965. Duchamp’s original work was a readymade with a reproduction (in actuality, a playing card) of da Vinci’s Mona Lisa mounted on a dinner invitation distributed on the occasion of the preview of his exhibition in New York. Duchamp pasted a playing card reproducing Mona Lisa on its back on the invitation and wrote down “L.H.O.O.Q. Shaved” just under the card.
Fujimoto suggested making the custom playing cards reproducing Mona Lisa in Pregnancy, a version of the Mona Lisa made by Morimura, in order to recreate the invitation card by Duchamp as an edition work. Fujimoto’s idea is to add a moustache and goatee to Morimura’s Mona Lisa, also on a playing card: in this variant of L.H.O.O.Q Shaved, Mona Lisa gets pregnant, undressed and moustached all in one fell swoop.
Morimura has proposed a closing event for the show in order to put the finishing touches on the edition work in collaboration with the guests who buy it. Thus the work is also the invitation itself to the event. The closing event is entitled, “Given: 1. Mona Lisa in Pregnancy, 2. Playing cards.” The edition work bears the same title.
A sample of the edition work will be exhibited at the show with decks of the custom playing cards.

In addition, Morimura will exhibit a series of new photographs featuring his self-portrait as Duchamp with a shaved head. Fujimoto will also exhibit new works related to the work of Duchamp.

A closing event to complete a collaborative project
Date: December 19 AM11:00

Those who want to buy the edition work will be invited to the event one at a time throughout the day. Each customer participates in a ritual to complete the edition work in collaboration with Fujimoto and Morimura. It will take a couple of minutes per person. The detail of the ritual will not be disclosed. The customers who won’t be able to take part in the event can ask the gallery to send the works to them later. Contact the gallery for details.

Edition work by Yukio Fujimoto, Yasumasa Morimura
Limited edition of 53
Size: 40 x 29 cm (folded)
Readymade: reproduction of Mona Lisa in Pregnancy (8.8 x 6.2), mounted on paper
Handwritten and signed by Fujimoto and Morimura
A deck of playing cards with the image of Morimura’s Mona Lisa printed on card backs is accompanied.

Closing event
Given: 1. Mona Lisa in Its Pregnancy / 2.Playing Cards
February 13, 2005