Yuken Teruya: Monopoly

22 January - 24 February 2016 Main Space

Pippy Houldsworth Gallery is delighted to present a body of new work by internationally acclaimed Japanese artist Yuken Teruya. Teruya is renowned for transforming overlooked, everyday ephemera into microcosmic works of art. For his second solo exhibition at Pippy Houldsworth Gallery, Teruya takes money as his primary focus. Deconstructing Monopoly boards, dollars and leaves in his characteristic style, Teruya traces the link between consumer culture and the organic, natural world.


Three Monopoly boards, frozen in a state of flux, are populated with notes covered in minute sprouts; delicate branches unfurl from trunk-like rolls of dollar sheets; dissected Monopoly notes are pinned and arranged into an abstract, multi-layered composition; McDonald’s bags, emblazoned with Monopoly slogans, harbor miniature trees modelled from specimens found in Central Park; a group of autumnal leaves, interspersed with acorns cast in brass and gold, are inscribed with serial codes, dollar denominations and phrases from Monopoly cards; Euro and Pound notes, covered in burgeoning shoots, intermingle together in tight clusters.


Using the cyclical format of Monopoly as inspiration, where players move around and around the board, Teruya looks backwards in order to highlight the origin of everyday materials and to explore the intersection between nature and value. Discussing this body of work in The New York Times, Teruya explains: ‘My intention is to give life back to the paper which I use. In a way, this talks about issues dealing with the environment and consumerism; my role is to create a stage for people to see that nature still exists in everyday objects and to instill a moment of calm in an imbalanced, money-driven society.’


Since gaining his MFA at the School of Visual Arts in New York in 2001, Teruya has exhibited with many major institutions including Guggenheim Museum, New York; 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa; Saatchi Gallery, London; GOMA, Queensland; MoMA PS1, New York, Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo and the Sydney Biennale 2012. His solo shows include those at The Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Arts; Kunstverein Wiesbaden; Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art and Dahlem Ethnological Museum, Berlin.


His work is represented in numerous international collections including the Guggenheim Museum, New York; Flag Art Foundation, New York; Smithsonian Institution, Washington; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Norton Collection, New York; Saatchi Gallery, London; Mori Art Museum, Tokyo and Seattle Art Museum, Washington.