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Artist to Host Movement-Based Installation at Green-Wood Cemetery

The Green-Wood Cemetery will host Eiko Otake and her installation Mother beginning Feb. 25

A movement-based artist will draw on aspects of her own mother’s funeral for an upcoming installation at the Green-Wood Cemetery.

“We all came from a mother, even if we never met them. From their own birth, mothers contain all the eggs that they will ever have in life. We have been formed from unmeasurable time. Reflecting on a mother’s life and body is also to reflect on our own life and body,” said artist Eiko Otake.

"Mother" is a site-specific video and sculptural installation that reflects on the maternal lineage that links us each to the past through the body and death.

Green-Wood Cemetery will host the installation Feb. 25-May 7 at the cemetery’s Historic Chapel. It will be free and open to the public daily from 10:00am-5:00pm. 

“It is a privilege to continue to work with Eiko, as the cemetery has proven to be an apt setting for her creative practice,” said Harry Weil, vice president of education and public programs for Green-Wood Cemetery.

“Whether through photographs, videos or live performances, she invites audiences into stirring conversations about death, mourning and healing.”

Established in 1838, the Green-Wood Cemetery is a national historic landmark and the permanent residence of over 570,000 individuals. It is also an outdoor museum, an arboretum and a repository of history. Throughout the year, the cemetery offers art and educational programming.

Otake previously held an exhibition at Green-Wood Cemetery in 2020. It was co-presented by Pioneer Works and entitled "A Body in a Cemetery."

“This multi-year relationship showcases Green-Wood’s commitment to the arts as a laboratory for new ideas and engaging programs,” Weil said.

"Mother" acts as both a conversation with Otake’s own mother, who passed away in 2019, and a place for reflection on our body’s own connection to a mother.

The artist uses crumpled paper with an image of her mother as a metaphor for a body and how it carries the memories that imprint on the living. While each of us has a different, and perhaps at times complicated or non-existent, relationship with our mothers, they inform aspects of who we are and who we may become.

From May 6-7, the exhibit’s closing weekend, Otake will present four solo performances at the chapel.

Otake is a movement-based interdisciplinary artist with a 50-year career performing in theaters and museums, as part of Eiko and Koma, and as a soloist.

She has often explored themes of loss, which has included practicing her own death, conversing with the dead and moving among the abandoned remains of irradiated Fukushima.

For more information, click here.