Japan House Los Angeles, a Japanese cultural destination in the heart of Hollywood, exhibits “RECONNECTING: A Vision of Unity by Kengo Kito” through September 6, 2021. In his first U.S. exhibition, Japanese artist Kengo Kito – known for repurposing everyday objects into conceptual art installations – uses hula hoops to create a unified structure, symbolizing the interconnectedness of humanity. From Japan, Kito remotely directed the creation of a hula hoop installation in the Japan House Los Angeles gallery.
Lauded as one of Japan’s most innovative contemporary artists, Kito not only reimagines everyday objects, but connects these modern materials with ideas rooted in traditional Japanese philosophy, culture, and art. Hula hoops allow Kito to explore the close relationship between the circle, the line, and space. When a hula hoop is formed, sen ga en ni naru (a line becomes a circle), and when a hoop is reopened, en ga sen ni naru (the circle becomes a line). By connecting hoops end-to-end, long lines become new, larger circles that all spatially intersect – a colorful, uplifting metaphor for people’s interconnectedness.
A total of 2,021 hoops will be used for the main gallery exhibition at Japan House Los Angeles, celebrating the unity of our shared experiences and reconnecting this year.
“Hula hoops have always been interesting materials for me to work with, as they are universal objects used around the world by both children and adults. They are not only circles but also lines and it’s possible to keep connecting them infinitely,” Kito said. “During the COVID-19 pandemic, the connections between people have been disrupted and weakened. In my work with Japan House Los Angeles, I want to create a visual expression of the idea that our world is made up of ‘connections.'”
The Japan House Los Angeles Gallery exhibition will consist of two sections. The front sub-gallery features smaller hula hoop installations, background materials and videos introducing Kito’s work and its connection to traditional Japanese art and philosophical concepts. The main gallery will be an immersive experience, allowing visitors to walk through a space transformed by Kito’s colorful, uplifting hula hoop structure.
Complimentary exhibition tickets for small groups can be reserved through JAPAN HOUSE’s online reservation system. Additionally, walk-ins are invited as space safely allows. The gallery is open daily from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m., with the last reservation block at 5:30 p.m.
About Japan House
Japan House is an innovative, worldwide project with three hubs, London, Los Angeles and Sao Paulo, conceived by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. It seeks to nurture a deeper understanding and appreciation of Japan in the international community.
Japan House Los Angeles occupies two floors at Hollywood & Highland. Japan House Los Angeles offers a place of new discovery that transcends physical and conceptual boundaries creating experiences that reflect the best of Japan through its spaces and diverse programs.
Location: 6801 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90028