Chim↑Pom

Nov 20, 2011–Apr 23, 2012

MoMA PS1

Installation view of Chim↑Pom at MoMA PS1, November 20, 2011–April 23, 2012. Photo: Matthew Septimus

Following the March 11, 2011 earthquake, the artist collective Chim↑Pom traveled to Soma City, Fukushima where they made friends with local youths—many of whom had lost their homes and loved ones, and were living among the destruction and radiation that accompanied the earthquake and subsequent destabilization of the nearby nuclear reactor. In response to the disaster they conducted a sequence of one hundred KI-AI. KI-AI is martial arts term describing a way to collect and direct one’s inner energy through exhalation or vocalization before attacking. Chim↑Pom plays on the idea by focusing the group’s energy through collective action which was video recorded. MoMA PS1 presents the resulting two-channel work KI-AI 100 (100 Cheers).

Unlike other areas that featured in many media reports, Soma City suffered from a shortage of volunteers, exacerbating the radiation-related problems and delaying the cleanup. The local youths, themselves victims of the quake, provided relief and aid towards reconstruction. Chim↑Pom explains, “This is the KI-AI shouted from the bottom of their hearts, in the midst of sorrow and delight, by those who live simultaneously as victim and aid worker. This is their reality!!”

Chim↑Pom is organized by Christopher Y. Lew, Assistant Curator of MoMA PS1.

This exhibition is made possible by the Annual Exhibition Fund with support from Hoor Al Qasimi, Richard Chang and Tina Lee, Adam Kimmel, Peter Norton and the Peter Norton Family Foundation, Jennifer McSweeney, Beth Swofford, David Teiger, Agnes Gund, Dana Farouki, Sydie Lansing, John Comfort, Philip E. Aarons and Shelley Fox Aarons, Mimi and Peter Haas Fund, and Enzo Viscusi, with additional funding from The Director's Circle of MoMA PS1, The Contemporary Circle of MoMA PS1, and MTV.

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