CAPC – Musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux

CAPC musée d'art contemporain de Bordeaux, 7 Rue Ferrere, 33000 Bordeaux, France

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Takako Saito

Address CAPC musée d'art contemporain de Bordeaux
7 Rue Ferrere
33000 Bordeaux
Opening hours Tuesday to Sunday from 11am to 6pm and until 8pm on the second Wednesday of the month.

Extension of the exhibition until > 3rd November

This retrospective is the first solo show of Takako Saito (born 1929 in Sabae-shi, Japan) in a French museum. It brings together more than 400 works since her beginnings in the 1960s alongside Fluxus artists George Maciunas in the United States, and George Brecht and Robert Filliou in France, before she settled in Düsseldorf at the end of the 1970s.


Comprising sculptures, paintings, performative and sound works as well as books, the exhibition surveys more than fifty years of Saito’s career, from her early works based on games (most notably chess) to her latest clothing designs. The retrospective, which bears witness to an ongoing interest in everyday objects and audience participation, will be punctuated by three performances by the artist, who turns 90 this year.The exhibition is accompanied by a trilingual catalogue (German, English, French) published by Snoeck Publishing (Cologne), with essays by Dieter Daniels, Larry List, Marc Schulz, Takako Saito, and Johannes Stahl.

Curators: Alice Motard, Eva Schmidt and Johannes Stahl

In partnership with Museum für Gegenwartskunst Siegen, Germany.
This exhibition is generously supported by the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen.


Takako Saito

Born in 1929 in Japan, lives and works in Dusseldorf.

From 1947 to 1950, she studied psychology at the Japan Women’s University in Tokyo, whilst joining the Creative Art Education movement, founded by Teijiro Kubo, that encourages free expression and play. In 1953 she met the artist Ay-O in Tokyo who showed her more avant-garde activities. He left for New York in 1958, she joined him in 1963 and settled in the Soho neighbourhood. It’s Ay-O who introduced her to the founder and organiser of Fluxus, George Maciunas, who liked her work around the notion of play, leading to her participation in the creation of ‘Fluxboxes’, creating ‘Fluxchess’ chess sets, such as Smell Chess and Spice Chess, in which each chess piece corresponds with a smell. Her productions are integrated to the first Fluxus compilation box, Fluxus 1 in 1964, as well as Flux Cabinet in 1977, created by George Maciunas. She left New York in 1968, heading first to France where she worked with George Brecht and Robert Filliou, then to England in 1973 where, with the support of the Beau Geste Press publishing house, she published her first artist’s books; she then settled in Italy from 1975 to 1979 where she worked for Francesco Conz publications. From 1979 to 1983, she taught at the Essen University in Germany. Takako Saito has been living in Dusseldorf ever since, where an exhibition was devoted to her in 1988 at the city’s Stadtmuseum. In the 1990s she questioned the notions of exchange and interactivity with the spectator with her You and me Shops.

Text reproduced with the kind authorisation of the Fondation du Doute

Portrait of Takako Saito (March 2019). Exhibtion Takako Saito, CAPC musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux (08.03 – 22.09.2019) © Takako Saito. © Adagp, Paris 2019. Photo: Arthur Péquin