Reversible Destiny Office, Site of Reversible Destiny, Yoro Park, Gifu, Japan
We have decided not to die.
There is no better way to introduce the legacy of Arakawa and Gins than with this proclamation that they coined during their life’s pursuit of their intellectually rigorous work. It’s a mantra that stands true to this artistic couple’s death-defying mentality and conscious awareness, questioning the idea of what it means to challenge our comfort levels and to treat our bodies as architecture for our knowledge-hungry minds.
Arakawa, who dropped his first name of Shusaku, was born in Nagoya, Japan in 1936 and briefly attended the Musashino Art University in Tokyo. Arakawa later became one of the founding members of Neo Dada, a Japanese avant-garde collective, and was one of the earliest practitioners of the international conceptual-art movement of the 1960s. Over in New York, Madeline Gins was born in 1941 and, after graduating from Barnard College in 1962, began focusing on experimental fiction and poetry. In the same year, they met, developing a personal and creative partnership. Together, they began their first pursuit entitled The Mechanism of Meaning, which expanded Arakawa’s painting practice and Gins’s writing into a series that sought to push the possibilities of art and language.