Walker Art Center

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Kim Itoh + The Glorious Future
Photo: Nobutoshi Takagi
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Kim Itoh

lives and works in Japan

Before starting his solo career in 1990, Japanese choreographer Kim Itoh studied with world-renowned Butoh master Anzu Furukawa. In a few short years, he has become an acknowledged leader in the next generation of post-Butoh and postmodern dance in Japan, forming the nine-member company The Glorious Future in 1995. He is known for his manic, ghostly, and occasionally disturbing balance of ballet, post-Butoh aesthetics, and striking theatricality. Itoh combines a ferocious punk energy with the sparseness and grace of many traditional Japanese art forms. I Want to Hold You addresses the fragility of human relationships in modern times, focusing on gender relations in contemporary Japanese society. Real physical contact vividly describes these relationships; couples hug, men and women cling to one another even as they are abandoned by their partners, but all are treated with Itoh's sense of discipline, humor, and irony.

--Diana Kim

Artists increasingly became less interested in defining themselves as visual artists, moving-picture artists, or performing artists. They were interested in areas of convergence, . . .
I donít have a problem with the performing arts being ephemeral art forms.
. . . there is a connected response to globalization between performative and discursive practices. To move from the proliferation of noncritical J-theater practices to serious responses to globalization means to negotiate with the world, to move from a self-inflictive, self-affirmative practice to a realistic art practice.