Press Release  December 15, 2020

Ground-breaking immersive installation opens in Te Papa’s Toi Art

Jack Fisher

Chiharu Shiota, The Web of Time (2020) at Te Papa

Te Papa’s newest site-responsive commission The Web of Time­ has opened to the public and will be on display in Toi Art until late 2021.

World-class artist Chiharu Shiota’s magnificent two-story-high artwork leads visitors through winding tunnels made from 3,750 balls of black wool.

Built in level 4 and level 5 of Toi Art’s Threshold Gallery, this thread installation immerses visitors in a carefully woven web, creating a space reflective of the cosmos, human existence, and the potential for the future.

Te Papa’s Head of Art Charlotte Davy says Chiharu is an outstanding artist whose work has the ability to completely transform a gallery space.

Jack Fisher

Chiharu Shiota, The Web of Time (2020) at Te Papa

“We are proud to exhibit the work of such a groundbreaking international artist at Te Papa this summer. Chiharu’s installation will have a wonderful impact on visitors who will become immersed in the twisting tunnels of delicate wool.”  

Artist Chiharu Shiota says she is delighted to be showing her work in New Zealand for the first time.

“I hope The Web of Time sparks new conversations and new ways of thinking for the people who experience this work. This installation aims to connect people through a universal language and a shared concept of time.”

Chiharu Shiota was born in Osaka, Japan in 1972 and now lives and works in Berlin.

Shiota’s inspiration often emerges from a personal experience or emotion which she expands into universal human concerns such as life, death and relationships. She has redefined the concept of memory and consciousness by collecting ordinary objects such as shoes, keys, beds, chairs and dresses, and engulfing them in immense thread structures. She explores this sensation of a ‘presence in the absence’ with her installations, but also presents intangible emotions in her sculptures, drawings, performance videos, photographs and canvases.

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