Thursday, October 15, 2015

Yoko Ono: One Woman Show at MoMA

Yoko Ono, who is well known as John Lennon’s wife, is simultaneously an avant-garde musician, and a performer. Although there are not so many people notice that, but Ono makes numerous art pieces as well. Now in Museum of Modern Art, Christophe Cherix curated Ono’s solo exhibition “One Woman Show, 1960-1971”, showing her drawings, installations, sculptures, music, videos, and performance pieces, which made in the 1960s. To show the visitors that Yoko Ono is no doubt an influential artist by herself. With the show, we can see not only her creations, and her amazing ideas to challenge our imaginary. When you first arrive at the show, there is a green apple at the entrance. This is a remade work of “ Apple” from 1961. For Ono, art is not only making beautiful objects. Art is a medium to make people think, and a moment to let people look at things differently. Have you ever looked at a green apple and considered it a designed object? This is the first question Ono gives to the visitors to think about. 
In her work “Grapefruit”, Ono created more than 150 pieces of instructions and self-published them in 1964. The words she wrote were so beautiful that “Grapefruit” can be considered as poetry. Inside the book, Ono also made some line drawings by pencil next to the instructions, which were related to the words she wrote for the pages. The collected instructions open the audiences imaginary and provide a different aspect of viewing. In “Cloud Piece” for instance, she wrote:
Imagine the clouds dripping. Dig a hole in your garden to put them in. How could clouds drip and we could dig a hole in our garden to put them in? In a way, “Apple” and “Grapefruit” are related to each other. She keeps breaking rules of our vision and opening the questions to the audiences.

Yen-Jui Lai


  1. H Yen,
    I like your opening which is well structured. Sufficient information helps. You successfully give audiences a clear idea of Yoko and her works. You offer many details about her works which is pleased to read, but the way you describe “Grapefruit” may be too subjective. Isn’t everyone feeling the same beauty of it. Additionally, I think it would be better, if you describe more how the show been presented. And I want to get a sense of what it's like to see the show overall from you.

  2. The background information Yen had here is well organized and also concise. Yen also shows that she understands Yoko Ono's work very well. Having the introduction of "Apple" is pretty helpful for viewers to understand Yoko Ono's main concept of most of her work. I am glad that Yen also covered "Grapefruit" in this review, even tho I may not agree that the drawings are aesthetically beautiful.