Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Two Japanese ladies in London

Thanks to Kiyo and Alberto, I found a nice cafe-restaurant in Angel: Art to Zen cafe-gallery. The atmosphere is arty with contemporary abstract paintings hanging on the walls. But for some reason it's not pretentious at all.

And the food is excellent. I ordered salmon and mussel tagliatelle. This tasted amazingly brilliant. And it cost just 5.50 quid. There are also some Japanese meals available.

It seems like the owner of this cafe is a Japanese called Akemi. I'm not sure if she's the chef. But she's done a great job here in London.


With Alberto, I visited the Serpentine Gallery. Until 10th April, the gallery features a Japanese contemporary artist Tomoko Takahashi, who was shortlisted for the Turner Prize in 2000. Her installation was crazy. Just crazy. At face value, it seems to be a total chaos; lots of rubbish are just scattered around. But look more closely and you'll feel a subtle sense of order in it. I felt the artist's enormous sensitivity. You may at first think you can construct this installation too. Think more and you'll realize you would go crazy if you have to finish it on your own.

Alberto, who usually is quite sceptical about contemporary art, was reminded of his childhood by looking at Takahashi's work. He seemed to like this rubbish art in the end.

On the final day of the exhibition, visitors will be allowed to take away any materials used for this installation. This kind of playful ideas can be seen in the installation as well, which probably contributes to the rather soft and tender atmosphere for a contemporary art exhibition.

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