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Galerie Gastou

Shiro Kuramata

Cabinet de Curiosités, 1989

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Exhibited at DESIGN MIAMI.BASEL 2024 The Cabinet de Curiosité, by Shiro Kuramata, is named for the *Wunderkammern* of Renaissance princes and and showcases a magical impression of suspending objects midair. This iconic work was unveiled at the Galerie Yves Gastou in 1988 and is a testament to Kuramata’s fascination with the illusion that allows objects to appear to float in space. The design reflects Kuramata’s exploration of the phenomenological effects of acrylic, focusing on elements such as light and lightness, invisibility and reflectivity, weight and weightlessness, to such an extent that the material has become a poetic signature of his work. Kuramata's œuvre embodies elegance and poetic lyricism within a minimalist aesthetic. He had a particular fascination with the visual possibilities of acrylics, exploiting the optical properties of the material for stunning decorative effects. His works are mutable, transforming with light and perspective.  This fascination with acrylic extended to the use of the term neiro, or ""sound-color,"" to describe the synesthetic effect that this material has in both its physical presence and the spectral color-shadows it casts as light passes through it. The cabinet’s relatively small footprint contrasted against the vast expanse of colored light reflected on the surrounding space demonstrates Kuramata’s ability to create the impression of borders that are simultaneously discrete yet interactive. This work is an important example of Kuramata's late creations, where he explored the realm of possibilities of perspex acrylic. The cabinet's beauty is particularly highlighted when light passes through it, emitting colored shadows throughout the surrounding space. The tall, slender legs also contribute to the floating appearance of the cabinet, and the objects placed within appear to be magically encased. Materials: colored perspex acrylic.

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