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‘Geometrical Form - 036’

  • Museum number:

    FE.204:1-2018

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

  • Public access description

    Trained as a carver of Buddhist sculptures, Kikuchi Toshimasa has recently become fascinated by mathematically generated forms not found in nature. This particular shape is known as the Kuen Surface. It was first described by Alfred Enneper (1830-1885) and is famous for being a rare example of constant negative curvature. The use of black lacquer and the elongation of the upper section enhance the aesthetic quality of the form.

    Kikuchi was born in Ehime Prefecture (Shikoku Island) in 1979. He studied Sculpture at Tokyo Gakugei University (BFA 2003) and then enrolled on the Conservation Course, Sculpture Laboratory, Graduate Department of Conservation, Graduate School of Fine Arts at Tokyo University of Arts. After completing his MFA (2005) and PhD (2008), he taught as an assistant on the Conservation Course.

    In 2009 he joined the University Museum, University of Tokyo (UMUT), since when he has been Project Assistant Professor in the Intermediateque Department. This is a rather unique outfit that four years ago opened a new display facility in a refurbished modernist building next to Tokyo Station, which it has fitted out with parts of the teaching collections of Tokyo University in the spirit of a Cabinet of Curiosities.

    The Intermediateque is ‘a facility dedicated to interdisciplinary experimentation venturing into cultural creation of a new kind based on the fusion of every means of expression. The platform [for such] activity is the permanent exhibition of the scientific and cultural heritage accumulated by the University of Tokyo since its foundation in 1877.’

    Kikuchi’s role is that of curator, conservator and artist-in-residence rolled into one. His own work, as in the case of this piece, draws for inspiration on the scientific instruments, mathematical models and samples of flora and fauna held by the UMUT.

  • Dimensions

    Height: 110 cm, Depth: 19.5 cm

  • Descriptive line

    Sculpture, ‘Geometrical Form - 036’, by Kikuchi Toshimasa, Japanese cypress wood covered in black lacquer, 2017

  • Labels and date

    Trained as a carver of Buddhist sculptures, Kikuchi has recently become fascinated by mathematically generated forms not found in nature. This particular shape is known as the Kuen Surface. It was first described by Alfred Enneper (1830-1885) and is famous for being a rare example of constant negative curvature. The use of black lacquer and the elongation of the upper section enhance the aesthetic quality of the form. [10/2017]

  • Collection code

    East Asia Collection