Miwa Yanagi – Windswept Women. The Old Girl´s Troupe


Februar 27 – April 17, 2010 


Loock Galerie is pleased to present, following a 2004 exhibition at the Deutsche Guggenheim, the work with which Miwa Yanagi represented Japan at the 53rd Venice Biennale in 2009: "Windswept Women: The Old Girls' Troupe."

Since the mid-1990s, Miwa Yanagi’s photographs and videos have focused on images of women. It began with "Elevator Girls", in which groups of young women in department store uniforms populated the scenery of shopping centers, underwater aquariums, subway tunnels, and architectural firms, and continued with her "My Grandmothers" series, in which she made individual leaps in time of fifty years. Now "Windswept Women" takes up the thread of her "Fairy Tales" series (2004-2008), in which she reinterpreted in her own way the relationship between grandmother and granddaughter in European fairy tales.

"Windswept Women" consists of five monstrous giants of different ages in elaborately ornamented picture frames, standing freely in the room like a collection of portraits of family members. The overwhelming size of the works, which are more than four meters tall, all but shrinks the viewer; ordinary perspectives and scales are eliminated. Not only dimensions but also power relationships seem to have been annulled. The windswept women seem to ring in not only the end of patriarchal society but also of humanity in general: buffeted by storms, defying all resistance, they break over the earth like an archaic, primal force. Yanagi’s images of women, as heroic as they are threatening, combine diverse references: Japanese monster films, European and Asian fairy tales, myths, and ghost stories. Yanagi creates ambivalent images of the Apocalypse that illustrate the primal fears and desires of our supposedly modern society.

Yanagi will present alongside "Windswept Women" her video "Lullaby" of 2010, combined with works from the "Fairy Tales" series. Yanagi’s latest work presents an unending duel between grandmother and granddaughter.


Miwa Yanagi, born in Kobe City, Japan, in 1967, lives and works in Kyoto, Japan. Her "Fairy Tales" series will be presented at the Kulturhuset Stockholm beginning in April.