Asaba | Katsumi Asaba & Dean Poole

Opening event, Friday August 10, from 6.30pm

Objectspace, Auckland

This exhibition showcases a selection of Asaba’s typographic posters that explore different visual languages from around the world. One of Asaba’s goals has been to forge a connection between contemporary graphic design and ancient writing systems. His principal area of expertise lies in the pictographic Dongba script used by the Naxi tribe from Lijiang in the Yunnan province of southwest China. It is the last living pictographic script left on the planet.

Asaba has played table tennis competitively around the world. He holds the title of sixth degree master in table tennis from the Japan Table Tennis Association. His art direction has changed the visual representation of the sport itself. He is responsible for changing the colour of ping-pong tables from dark green to blue and the ball to yellow. He is the ambassador for ‘Solo Ping Pong Diplomacy’, which has led him to play in more than 30 countries. Many of Asaba’s posters record his playing of the sport in extreme situations, including a frozen lake in Hokkaido and a floating ping-pong table in Israel’s Dead Sea.

Katsumi Asaba’s invitation to play in New Zealand is the Asaba Table – an interactive sculpture designed by Dean Poole. It sees the standard ping-pong table reinvented as one-part science experiment, one-part musical instrument. In this table ping-pong balls levitate out of voids; it can also return a shot or spit a ball out at random. This table is not only a surface for a collaborative performance, it is an object that becomes a participant in the game, with a spirit of its own.


Date(s) - 10/08/2018 - 09/09/2018
All Day