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URGENCY OF PROXIMATE

“Ninki” is a Japanese word which means “Popular.”

DRAWING

The Ninki Art Project of drawings and drawings on photographs consists of numerous archetypal images of popular celebrities in vague appearances. Their activities and 1

characters are anarchistic and individualized. The popular celebrities such as Michael Jackson, Mike Tyson, Zinedine Zidan, Diego Maradona, Shoib Akhter (the World’s Fastest Cricket Bowler), Asashoryu (25-time Top Division Sumo Champion in Japan) have all been popular icons during the span of their careers, but all have been blemished by controversy for one reason or another.

I focus on celebrities in excited, playful, sporty and happy moments. I draw remarkable lines where they are about to fall or in moments where they demonstrate hard gestures in the photographs. Their idolized appearances are highlighted by protective line drawings that display an awareness of the performative ethos of iconic expression. The lines

underneath the falling position imply the stardoms can’t fall down from the gestures and positions that they are held in.

FIROZ MAHMUD


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URGEN CY O F P RO XIMATE DRAWIN G


EDITOR

ISBN

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Francesca Fanelli, James Jack, Aryan Snowball

PHOTOGRAPHY

Hiroshima Museum of Contemporary Art / Juri Yamashita, Sharjah Art Foundation / Alfredo Dancel Rubio, The Kunsthaus Tacheles, Mimi Fadmi / Asbestos Art space, DESIGN AND CONCEPT

Cindy Rodriguez

© 2011 FÄCT Publishing and Firoz Mahmud

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior written permission from the artist and publisher.

CONTRIBUTIONS

Ozawa Tsuyoshi, Asbestos Art Space TRANSLATION

Miho Murashima

Publishing this book was made possible with generous support of Asian Cultural Council (ACC) New York, Ota Fine Arts Tokyo and Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam.

COVER IMAGE

Asashoryu007 – Urgency of Proximate Drawing

www.firozmahmud.com


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.)/("-#(0-!+,%)&$ FIROZ MAHMUD IS A BANGLADESHI ARTIST, WHO WAS BORN AND

raised in Khulna and Dhaka. After his graduation from Dhaka University, he moved to Amsterdam for an artist-in-residence and research program at Rijksakademie Van Beeldende Kunsten. He has travelled, lived and worked in many countries in Europe,

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RESCUE

Asia and the United States of America for the last decade. He was adopted in many traditional cultures and life during his time abroad, and also was very much impressed by popular culture and various kinds of entertaining fields and media, which were greatly expressed through mediums such as music, sports, politics, animation, cartoon and film. Besides his major art projects and painting, he makes drawings

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with fun on celebrity images. He has been drawing for the last few years on popular celebrities such as singers, sportsmen, actors or actresses who have huge popularity, but all have controversy in media and among the public. During his life and career in Japan, he experienced a lot of humorous and different feelings from Japanese manga, animation, life, society and culture. Japanese Manga is a genre

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of cartoons, comic books, and animated films in Japanese society.

Firoz focuses on celebrities in excited, playful, sporty and happy

Firoz was inspired to make theUrgency of Proximate Drawing for

moments in images. He draws remarkable lines where they are

the famous celebrities. That is why the title of his drawing project

about to fall or feel hard to gesture in the photographs. Their

was named NinKi:UoPD.

idolized appearances are highlighted by protective line drawings that display an awareness of the performative ethos of iconic

“Ninki” is a Japanese word which means “popular.” The Ninki Art

expression. The lines underneath the falling position imply

Project of drawings and drawings on photographs consists of

the stardoms can’t fall down from the gestures and positions that

numerous archetypal images of popular celebrities in vague

they are held in. Most of the drawing structure he has named

appearances. Their activities and character are anarchistic

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“Tsukaibou” or “Salvager”. The “Tsukaibou” is a Japanese word

and individualized. They are popular celebrities of different

meaning support or a kind of “salvager.” The structure often

fields of entertainment and culture – Michael Jackson,

looks like a diamond or an octagon or a magician’s wand.2

Mike Tyson, Zinedine Zidan, Diego Maradona, cricketer

Firoz is a magician to save the celebrities! He implies different

Shoib Akhter (world’s fastest cricket bowler), Sumo wrestler

valuable reasons for most of the drawing structures. He uses his

Asashoryu Akinori (25 times top division Sumo champion in

own created structure of drawing on the image where needed.

Japan) among other are the main character of his drawings. They are all popular icons during their span of career, but all have been blemished by controversy for one reason or another.

3D STRUCTURE OF

Attesting to Sympathy for the Champions, Politic Strategy to Rescue

“TSUKAIBOU”

Superstar implies that he declares that the motion of the popular

OR “SALVAGER”

icons need support while they are in danger of their falling

NinKi Urgency of Proximate Drawings are mostly on Sumo wrestler

positions in the images. In the images, sometimes, they shout

Asashoryo Akinori.1 Firoz was living in Japan for some time

opening their mouths and the “Tsukaibou” or “Salvager” is in

and became interested in making the drawings on a sumo

the mouth. The drawing structures allow the celebrities to

wrestler who is both admired for his success in sumo wrestling

shout longer, in a relaxed mode – shouting against the media

and controversial during his career. The other celebrities have

that criticizes them.

similar reasons for popularity and controversy.

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After doing several projects with the drawings, Firoz does not exhibit the Urgency of Proximate Drawings in commercial galleries or museums in a formalized way. Instead, he prefers to exhibit in public spaces 3, buildings, trains, buses, monuments related to the celebrities’ own arenas, such as stadiums, concert halls, and sumo dome. The images prefer to appear in music magazines, cricket, football, boxing or wrestling magazines, and Japanese gay magazines, like Budi. Some people told him that drawings on sumo look naked and sexual, wouldn’t gay people love these! The NinKi:UoPD (Urgency of Proximate Drawings) exhibited 13

and appeared in both places. The Urgency of Proximate Drawings was initiated as fun while he was drinking coffee or green tea. Gradually, friends, curators, and artists were interested in seeing Firoz exhibit the drawings as his artwork. He decided to express the drawings as his series of art projects. Several volumes of the NinKi:UoPD drawings were made and exhibited in the last few years and held in different venues in different countries. The project in New York will likely be the last session for this project.

2008 – 2011 NinKI : UoPD (Urgency of Proximate Drawing) Tokyo, THE UNIVERSITY OF THE ARTS, Anole (A.), 2008. UAE, Sharjah. SHARJAH BIENNALE 2009, RRR (Rally Round Rajah) at Halcyon Tarp Project. 2009. Nigata, ECHIGO-TSUMATI ART TRIENNALE (Dynamo Art Project) Japan, Anole & Sentient Homology. 2009. Hiroshima, HIROSHIMA MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART, Rescued Stardom. 2009.Bandung, Indonesia,

ASBESTOS ART SPACE & CITY, Whatever They are Scolded Your Star is Safe.2010. Tokyo, UNDERGROUNDS, Loss of the Toss is Blessing of Their Disguise. 2010. Tokyo, B.A.D. MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART – YUGA GALLERY, Tokyo University of the Arts, Yatta ! Anzen ! New York, UNDERGROUND AND PUBLIC SPACES, I buy, you frame – 10% tax and 100% discount. Firoz Mahmud’s NinKI: UoPD , Urgency of Proximate Drawing is on SALE. 2011 (Up-coming).

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SALVAGER / TSUKAIBOU

Sculpture to correspond with the drawing image. Wood, acrylic paint, bond Size of the object ‘Tsukaibou’ 60 x 60 x 40 cm

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“The objects of ‘Salvager,’ or ‘Tsukaibou,’ are 3-D models that protect or support the celebrities from their position in the photographs.”


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media: Ink, gel-based rollerball pen, felt-tip, correction fluid, and acrylic paint on paper.

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2011

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NINKI: NEW YORK

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Loss of the Toss is Blessing of their Disguise, Underground and Billboards, Tokyo, Japan, 2011.

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Yatta ! Anzen ! B.A.D. Museum of Contemporary Art, Yuga Gallery. University of the Arts, Tokyo, Japan, 2010.

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2011

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LOSS OF THE TOSS IS BLESSING OF THEIR DISGUISE

Underground & Billboards, Tokyo, Japan.

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2010

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Yatta ! Anzen !

B.A.D. Museum of Contemporary Art, Yuga Gallery. University of the Arts. Tokyo, Japan.

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2009 - 2009

RESCUED STARDOM, SUMO ASASHORYU

Black and white photograph, gel-based rollerball pen, felt-tip, correction fluid and acrylic paint Size of photographs vary from 20 x 30 cm to 150 x 200cm

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Whatever They Are Scolded, Your Star is Safe, Asbestos Art Space and City Public spaces, Bandung, Indonesia, 2010. Rescued Stardom, Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art (MoCA Hiroshima), Hiroshima, 2009.

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2010

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WHATEVER THEY ARE SCOLDED, YOUR STAR IS SAFE

Asbestos Art Space, Bandung, Indonesia

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2010

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WHATEVER THEY ARE SCOLDED, YOUR STAR IS SAFE

City Public Spaces, Bandung, Indonesia

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2009

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RESCUED STARDOM

Installation view. Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, (MoCa Hiroshima), Hiroshima, Japan

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RESCUED STARDOM: DIEGO MARADONA

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RESCUED STARDOM: MIKE T YSON

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RESCUED STARDOM: ----INSERT NAME-----

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RESCUED STARDOM: MICHAEL JACKSON

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Anole & Sentient Homology, EchigoTsumati Art Triennale (Dynamo Art Project), Nigata, Japan, 2009.

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RRR (Rally Round Rajah), Sharjah Biennale at Halcyon Tarp Project, Sharjah, UAE, 2009. Anole, The University of the Arts, Tokyo, Japan, 2008.

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ANOLE AND SENTIENT HOMOLOGY

Installation veiw: Echigo-Tsumati Art Triennale (Dynamo Art Project), Nigata, Japan

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ANOLE

The University of the Arts, Tokyo Japan

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RRR (RALLY ROUND RAJAH)

Part of Halcyon Tarp Project at Sharjah Biennale, Sharjah, UAE

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BIOGRAPHY

in Tokyo, Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art (2010) in Japan, kunsthaus Tacheles in Berlin, Rochester Contemporary Art Center, New York, Sovereign Asian Art Foundation, The Landmark Atrium, Hong Kong, ShContemporary08, Shanghai Exhibition Center, S.M.A.K., The Municipal Museum of Contemporary Art – Ghent, Witte de With, Center for Contemporary Art,Rotterdam, Changwon Sungsan Art Hall, Korea, National Art Gallery, Rijksakademie, Dhaka, Van Beeldende Kunsten, Projectruimte Oost, MediaSchip in Amsterdam, Metropolitan-Gallery Mostings & Byggeriets Hus, Frederiksberg, Copenhagen,Denmark, Royal Over-seas League, London, Concourse RNCM, Manchester and Edinburgh College of Art, Scotland, Mayor Plaza, Madrid, Birla Academy, Kolkata, India, Asbestos Art Space, La Gallery, National Gallery and National Museum, Dhaka,Yatta ! Anzen !- NinKi:UoPD, B.A.D. Museum of Contemporary Art Yuga Gallery Geidai, ‘Lamentation’

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FIROZ MAHMUD (studio/pseudonym: fee`rose) was born in Khulna, Bangladesh.

Ota Fine Arts , Tokyo. His up-coming shows are ‘I Buy, You Frame! 10% Tax,

Based in Dhaka & Tokyo . He studied BFA (1997) from Dhaka University,

100% Discount – Urgency of Proximate Drawing is on SALE’, New York and

MFA (2007) from Tama Art University and PhD (2011) from Tokyo University

‘Step Across This Line’– Contemporary art from Bangladesh, India and Pakistan,

of the Arts.

Asia House, London.

He attended in artist residency/ research program at the Rijksakademie Van

He got several national and international awards and prizes including Asian

Beeldende Kunsten (2003-04), Amsterdam, Ozu Culture Center (2009),

Cultural Council/Starr Foundation grantfrom New York (ACC – 2010/

Italy, Kolkata Nandonik, Kolkata, National Art Gallery, Dhaka and International

2011), Short listed5-Jiro Yoshihara Project 2009mini, Osaka Contemporary

Studio and Curatorial Program (ISCP) (2010/2011) in New York.

Art Center, Prize for Art project Ideas` from Hiroshima City Museum

He exhibited in a number of major exhibitions including, 1st Aichi Triennale (2010), Tashkent Biennale (2009), Sharjah Biennale , UAE (2009), Cairo Biennale (2008), Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale (2006 & 2009 in DAP), Asian Biennale Bangladesh (2008, 2002 & 2000). His work also exhibited at the Metropolitan Art Museum in Tokyo, Fuchu Art Museum, Ota Fine Arts, University Art Museum, Mori Art Museum (Center Gallery) , The University Art Museum, Tokyo University of the Arts

of Contemporary Art(2009), Arts Networks Asia (ANA research grant), Singapore (2007),Kaiseikai Foundation Grants (2007),Monbukagakusho Japanese Government Scholarship (2007),Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs Rijksakademie Fellowship , Netherlands (2003), ’Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation Grants’,Canada (1998), C.E.D.S.-Prize’,Royal Over-seas League, London, Khalaghar National Art Prize, Dhaka, Dilnasheen Khanom Gold Medal (2002) & Shilpachariya Zainul Gold Medal’ (All Art Media Best), Institute of Fine Art, Dhaka(1997). He represented by Ota Fine Arts in Tokyo.

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“Through a very unique point of view, Firoz focuses on a moment of people’s lives. Although his method is very simple, it reconstructs the space in a very strong way. His works give viewers a lot of excitement.” Ozawa Tsuyoshi, Artist

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U RG ENCY OF PR OX I MA TE D R A W I NG


Urgency of Proximate Drawing