Chiharu Shiota - What Now?: Online Auction Hong Kong Thursday, February 2, 2023 | Phillips
  • “A thread to me is an analogy for feelings or human relationships. When using it, I do not know how to lie. I can create unlimited spaces that seem to me to gradually expand into a universe. When I can no longer trace a yarn installation or art object with my eye, it begins to feel complete." —— Chiharu Shiota


    Born in 1972 in Osaka and based in Berlin, renowned Japanese artist Chiharu Shiota is famous for her immersive, three-dimensional installations and artworks that incorporate found objects, such as keys, clothes and musical instruments suspended in intricate arrangements of stretched yarns. Exploring subjects concerning the basis of human experience, including life, death and relationships, her works remember and honour the threads of association that make up the complex social web bringing human beings together.


    Sourcing objects around the world, Shiota involves them in complicated compositions, where interlacing threads around objects seems to have stopped the ticking clock, freezing them in a transitory state of falling. A part of the artist’s State of Being sculpture series, the 2015 State of Being (Keys) features sets of keys suspended in between fiery red yarns that compose a cocooning and tangled space, confined within a rectangular cuboid metal frame. While the colour evokes a strong sense of passion and life, the keys seem so close yet so far, tinging the work with a touch of complexity and dilemma of human existence.


    The keys motif immediately calls to mind Shiota’s large-scale installations exhibited at the 56th Venice Biennale in 2015, where a breath-taking world of stretched red threads exploding from or floating above wooden boats with countless keys hanging off the yarns. These keys are collected from around the world, adding intangible collective memories into the tangible materialisation of the artist’s personal experience of the world.

    Chiharu Shiota speaking about her installation, The Key in the Hand, made for the 2015 Venice Biennale Japanese Pavilion


    Shiota has been exhibited extensively across the world, including representing Japan at the 56th Venice Biennale with installation The Key in the Hand (9 May – 22 November 2015). Her latest solo exhibitions include the ongoing Invisible Line at Aros Museum, Denmark (3 December 2022 – 16 April 2023), State of Being at Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne (25 June – 23 July 2022), and Carte blanche to Chiharu Shiota at Musée Guimet, Paris (16 March - 6 June 2022). Her most recent group exhibitions include JAPAN. BODY_PERFORM_LIVE at PAC Padiglione dÀrte Contemporanea, Milan (22 November 2022 – 12 February 2023), and BAB 2022 Chaos: Calm at Bangkok (22 October 2022 – 23 February 2023).

    • Provenance

      Galerie Daniel Templon, Paris
      Acquired from the above by the present owner


State of Being (Keys)

signed with the artist’s initials "CS" lower left
metal frame, old keys and red thread
50.1 x 50.1 x 30 cm. (19 3/4 x 19 3/4 x 11 3/4 in.)
Executed in 2015.

Full Cataloguing

HK$450,000 - 650,000 

Sold for HK$819,000

Contact Specialist

Hin Hin Wong

Associate Specialist, 20th Century & Contemporary Art, Hong Kong

+852 2318 2013

What Now?: Online Auction

Online Auction 2 - 9 February 2023