Americas

Yuji Agematsu
zip: 01.01.15 . . . 01.31.15

Each day, Yuji Agematsu smokes a pack of cigarettes and wanders the streets of New York City looking for trash. Needless to say, he finds it everywhere: bottle caps, gummed hair, translucent miscellany, sick feathers, hot pink plastics, unknown, and more. The varied bits are then constellated by the artist in cellophane cigarette wrappers—modest vitrines for his steady collecting habit.

zip: 01.01.15 . . . 01.31.15 presents Agematsu’s findings and subsequent arrangements on each day of January 2015. The wrappers are displayed left to right on a series of stacked shelves, as a calendar. One after the other, the entries form a network of perverted time capsules, both visible and opaque. Something melting into yellow liquid. Various clumps, approximately a bracelet. A cracked pen, so bodily.

“The city is a machine that creates a new city, new buildings, new shit, and each day I walk around observing and collecting it,” Agematsu notes. “There is always something to do, clean up the building, go to the bank, the eye doctor, pay the bills, always some bureaucracy I have to deal with, so while I’m out I make my work.”

Yuji Agematsu is an artist who works across various media, including sound, photography, and the arrangements of objects—not exactly sculpture. Active in experimental music for many decades, Agematsu often performs abstract compositions in conjunction with the presentation of images from multiple slide projectors. His photographic practice focuses on the effects of time and change on New York City, where he emigrated from Japan in 1980. He is primarily known for his zips, elegant and obdurate collections of found debris placed into cellophane cigarette wrappers.