Mika Tajima

Artadia Awardee

“Mika Tajima translates far-reaching threads of contemporary life into works that highlight our relationships to modernity. Her work reflects and even predicts our collective selves as data producers and consumers, as products of industrial and technological design, affecting and potentially controlling our emotional states.” – Jurors Matthew Lyons and Laura Raicovich

Mika Tajima holds a BA in Fine Arts and East Asian Studies from Bryn Mawr College, Bryn Mawr, PA, and an MFA from Columbia University, School of the Arts, New York, NY. Selected exhibitions include Air Max at Pace Geneva, Switzerland; Appear at Dazaifu Tenmangu, Dazaifu, Japan; Spectral, Taro Nasu, Tokyo, Japan; World of Networks, Centre Pompidou, Paris, France; Speculative Portraits, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA; Pacific Century, Hawaii Triennial 2022, Honolulu, HA; Æther at Borusan Contemporary, Istanbul, Turkey; Dirty Protests, The Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; Programmed, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY; COLORI, Castello di Rivoli and GAM, Torino, Italy; All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace, Palais de Tokyo, Paris, France; Meridian (Gold), Sculpture Center, New York, NY. Her work is also in public collections that include Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA; Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, TX; Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; Hirschhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C. Her work is represented by Taro Nasu, Tokyo and Pace.

“My artwork is about control, performance, and freedom. Recent exhibitions focus on the bodily and psychic experience of power ― being a subject of contactless force from within and beyond. I am interrogating the production of an embodied subject as both a target of ortho-architectonic control and the soft governmentality of computational life. This is where the human body comes in tension with the machinic body and its constructionist logic of fragmentation and measurement. Where the diffused productive life energies and activities of individuals are processed as information to be scraped and decoded — confronting the technological imperative to make everything visible and to bring everything to light.

I have been using sentiment analysis and predictive analytics in recent work to interrogate how technology is being used to shape our present–our desires, decisions, and daily life. In creating heightened sensorial and material experiences in my media and light installations, the projects contemplate an existence thoroughly shaped by technology and the soft power that regulates us as subjects from within our psyche.”