The Art of Mariko Mori: The Use of Body as a Subject Matter to Represent Issues of Identity and Culture in Her Society

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How has the artist used the body as a subject matter to represent issues of identity ad culture in his/her society?

Mariko Mori (born in Tokyo in 1967) is considered one of the major young representatives in the contemporary art scene. She worked as a fashion designer before and this inspired many of her later works. Mariko Mori uses her body to explore the "instability of identity" by presenting herself in glittering, self-designed costumes in extremely out of the world settings, juxtaposing reality and fantasy. She approaches her work in a rather narcissistic way, documenting herself as different images, taking on different identities and roles to convey her intentions in her artworks. Her works is a mixture of culture and technology, art and performance, nature and spirituality. She is especially interested in the synthesis of opposites, mainly science and culture, the spiritual and the material and fantasy and reality. While in New York, she was forced to question her identity as a Japanese woman in a variety of cultures and traditions and this experience gives her the insight required to compare and contrast cultures in the world and within an individual.

Last Departure
Cibachrome print, aluminium, wood, smoke aluminium / Tirage Cibachrome, aluminium, bois 6.11 feet x 11.11 feet x 3 inches / 213 x 365 x 7,5 cm

Her artwork Last Departure, made in 1996, is an alternate dimension to our world and has the ability to draw the audience into her work. It seems like Utopia, a virtual world where everything seems perfect. Mariko Mori is dressed as a cyber fairy, carrying a crystal ball. This character is similar to the one in her other work Miko no inori, where the character is seen to twist the crystal ball in her hands, as if commanding fate and the future. Being in the airport, which resembles her space ship, her character is probably heading off somewhere to seek for some sort of transformation within the individual. Upon further...
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