Chiharu Shiota

Who am I Tomorrow?

Press Preview
Wednesday, 5 July 2023, 10:30 am

Public Opening
Thursday, 6 July 2023, 7 pm

Artist Talk
Friday, 7 July 2023, 2 pm

Exhibition Duration
7 July to 12 November 2023
daily 10 am to 6 pm

Reiseziel Museum – family programme
6 August and 3 September 2023, 10 am to 5 pm


For the former assembly hall of Kunstraum Dornbirn, Chiharu Shiota is developing a new installation entitled Who am I Tomorrow?”, an installation realised for the first time beyond the characteristic thread tensions. The specific architecture of the exhibition space is always a basic condition from which Shiota formally develops her projects. Each work is adapted to the respective space and thus each presentation can be experienced uniquely in the here and now. The given space is the beginning and end point of her works, without which they do not exist or persist.

In her multimedia art, Schiota processes her own history, personal experiences and emotions, traumas and fears, revealing the fundamental human needs for belonging and security mirrored in the uncertainties of existence. The one doesn’t exist without the other. Shiota’s approach to expressing the contradictions of human existence reacts upon the viewers: the formal language touches people intensely, around the world and across generations. Schiota connects with their stories and makes tangible the collective in the personal. In her world-famous installations and environments, for example, she develops fine-textured fabric-like spaces made of threads, connected with collected objects such as keys, letters or suitcases. These labour-intensive tensions seem like a translation of the drawing line into three-dimensional, physically experienceable space.

In her career, an uncompromising approach to the mode of expression can be discerned early on: Schiota emancipated herself from painting, which she had initially studied, through a performance entitled “Becoming Painting” (1994), in which she doused herself with red enamel paint. This paint attacks the skin – a symbolically and physically forceful departure from the genre of painting and its legacy towards a search for one’s own destiny as an artist, at that time still with an open outcome.

Chiharu Shiota was born in 1972 in Osaka Prefecture, Japan, and has lived in Berlin since 1998. She studied at Seika University in Kyoto from 1992-1996 and attended the University of Fine Arts in Hamburg from 1996-1997. She then studied at the the University of Fine Arts in Braunschweig until 1999 and subsequently at the University of Arts in Berlin until 2003. Her work has been presented in numerous solo and group exhibitions worldwide, and in 2015 it represented Japan at the Venice Biennale.

A catalogue accompanies the exhibition.

Chiharu Shiota: “Congregation”, 1997, Performance/Installation, Buchholz, Germany Photo Ben Stone, © Bildrecht Wien 2023 and the artist.
Chiharu Shiota: “Becoming Painting”, 1994, Performance/Installation, School of Art, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia, Photo Ben Stone, © Bildrecht Wien 2023 and the artist.
Chiharu Shiota: “One Thousand Springs”, 2021, installation, Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, London, UK, Photo Jeff Eden, © Bildrecht Wien 2023 and the artist.
Chiharu Shiota: “Further Memory”, 2010, Installation, Setouchi International Art Festival: 100-Day Art and Sea Adventure, Teshima, Japan, Photo Sunhi Mang, © Bildrecht Wien 2023 and the artist.
Chiharu Shiota: “From DNA to DNA”, 1994, Performance/Installation, Kyoto Seika University, Japan, Photo Kayoko Matsunaga, © Bildrecht Wien 2023 and the artist.
Chiharu Shiota: “Wall”, 2010, Video still, © Bildrecht Wien 2023 and the artist.
Chiharu Shiota, Berlin, 2020 Photo Sunhi Mang
Chiharu Shiota: “Out of My Body”, 2019, installation view “Shiota Chiharu: The Soul Trembles”, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan, 2019, Courtesy of Kenji Taki Gallery, Photo Sunhi Mang, Photo Courtesy Mori Art Museum, © Bildrecht Wien 2023 and the artist.
Chiharu Shiota: “Lost Words”, 2017, installation, Museum Nikolaikirche, Berlin, Germany, Photo Leo Seidel, © Bildrecht Wien 2023 and the artist.
Chiharu Shiota: “The Key in the Hand”, 2015, installation, Japan Pavilion, 56th International Art Exhibition — La Biennale di Venezia, Venice, Italy, Photo Sunhi Mang, © Bildrecht Wien 2023 and the artist.