Tetsuya Ishida: My Anxious Self

Published in conjunction with the landmark exhibition, Tetsuya Ishida: My Anxious Self, at Gagosian New York, this fully illustrated catalog documents more than eighty paintings by the late Tetsuya Ishida and includes new essays by Cecilia Alemani and Diethard Leopold.

Tetsuya Ishida: My Anxious Self accompanies the 2023 survey exhibition, curated by Cecilia Alemani, of more than eighty paintings by the late Japanese artist on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of his birth. With works from the Ishida Estate, notable private collections, and the Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art, Shizuoka City, Japan, Tetsuya Ishida: My Anxious Self represents the most comprehensive presentation of the artist’s work to have been staged outside Japan, and his first ever in New York.  

Over the course of just ten years, Ishida produced a striking body of work centered on the theme of human alienation. He emerged as an artist during Japan’s “lost decade,” a recession that lasted through the 1990s, and his paintings capture the feelings of hopelessness, claustrophobia, and disconnection that characterized Japanese society during this time of rapid technological advancement. Before his untimely death in 2005, Ishida conjured allegories of the challenges to national life in paintings and graphic works charged with a Kafkaesque absurdity.

The catalog contains lavish plate photography, including details, of the exhibited paintings. An extensive essay by Alemani provides essential historical and interpretive context for the work, while an essay by Diethard Leopold examines Ishida’s frequent use of his own face in his paintings. The catalog also features a foreword by Larry Gagosian; an introduction by Michiaki Ishida, the artist’s brother; and a reprint of the short story “The Red Cocoon” (1950) by Kōbō Abe.

Ishida was born in the city of Yaizu, in Shizuoka Prefecture, in 1973, and died in Tokyo in 2005. Gagosian presented the first exhibition of Ishida’s work outside Japan, in Hong Kong in 2013.

About The Author

Kōbō Abe (1924–1993), considered one of Japan’s most influential postwar novelists, is also known for his short stories, plays, and film scenarios. Cecilia Alemani, an Italian curator based in New York, is the Donald R. Mullen Jr. Director and Chief Curator of High Line Art, the public art program presented by the High Line in New York. Michiaki Ishida is the older brother of Tetsuya Ishida. Diethard Leopold, born in Vienna in 1956 to a family of art collectors, continues to live in the Austrian capital where he works as a curator at the Leopold Museum and writes opera librettos in the style of Japanese Noh plays.

  • Publish Date: April 16, 2024
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Category: Art - Individual Artists - Monographs
  • Publisher: Gagosian / Rizzoli
  • Trim Size: 10-3/4 x 12-1/4
  • Pages: 216
  • US Price: $100.00
  • CDN Price: $135.00
  • ISBN: 978-0-8478-3218-7

Author Bookshelf: Cecilia Alemani

Author Bookshelf: Larry Gagosian