Tags for: Tabaimo: Blow
  • Special Exhibition

Tabaimo: Blow

Friday, July 14–Saturday, December 16, 2023
Location: Transformer Station

About The Exhibition

Fusing traditional Japanese art forms with contemporary digital animation, the Japanese artist Tabaimo’s 2009 artwork Blow is on view at Transformer Station for the first time since its 2012 acquisition by the Cleveland Museum of Art. A pioneering video artist, she created Blow as a four-channel, immersive video installation that blurs lines between fantasy and reality.

Upon entering the immersive exhibition, visitors are transported to a constructed world of the artist’s creation. Animated bubbles, fragmented body parts, and various plants float through space in a five-minute looped video. Using a kind of printmaking technique that recalls the artist’s inspiration from Japanese woodcut prints, she often layers different drawings to create her digital videos. For the human body parts seen throughout Blow, she drew the musculature, skeleton, veins, and skin separately, then scanned and combined them for a result that is realistic yet imperfect. The accompanying audio, which mimics the dripping and rushing of water, is an acoustic collage of digitally invented sounds. 

The open-ended, fragmentary nature of the piece is intentional, as the artist often draws from personal experiences and emotions, but she says, “I leave 50 percent up to the viewer. The core of my work is something to be thought through, experienced.” 

On view in the Crane Gallery is another work by Tabaimo, The Obscuring Moon (2016), which draws on the artist’s inspiration from traditional Japanese prints, taking them to animated, fantastical ends.


Blow is a presentation of the Cleveland Museum of Art at Transformer Station. All exhibitions organized by the Cleveland Museum of Art are underwritten by the CMA Fund for Exhibitions. Principal annual support is provided by Michael Frank and the late Pat Snyder, the John and Jeanette Walton Exhibition Fund, and the late Roy L. Williams. Generous annual support is provided by an anonymous supporter, the late Dick Blum and Harriet Warm, Gary and Katy Brahler, Cynthia and Dale Brogan, Dr. Ben and Julia Brouhard, Brenda and Marshall Brown, Mr. and Mrs. Walter R. Chapman Jr., Richard and Dian Disantis, the Jeffery Wallace Ellis Trust in memory of Lloyd H. Ellis Jr., Leigh and Andy Fabens, the Frankino-Dodero Family Fund for Exhibitions Endowment, Janice Hammond and Edward Hemmelgarn, Carl T. Jagatich, Cathy Lincoln, Eva and Rudolf Linnebach, William S. and Margaret F. Lipscomb, Bill and Joyce Litzler, Lu Anne and the late Carl Morrison, Jeffrey Mostade and Eric Nilson and Varun Shetty, Tim O’Brien and Breck Platner, William J. and Katherine T. O’Neill, Henry Ott-Hansen, Betty T. and David M. Schneider, the Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation, Margaret and Loyal Wilson, and the Womens Council of the Cleveland Museum of Art.