Atsuko Tanaka (artist)  

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Atsuko Tanaka (February 10, 1932 - December 3, 2005) was a pioneering Japanese avant-garde artist, best-known for her Electric Dress (1956).

Born in Osaka, she studied at the Art Institute of Osaka Municipal Museum of Art in 1950 and, from 1951 on, at the Department of Western Painting at Kyoto Municipal College of Art (now Kyoto City University of Arts). In 1955, she joined the Gutai group, an avant-garde artists' movement, to which she belonged until her marriage with Akira Kanayama in 1965.

Tanaka's works, which include abstract paintings, sculptures, performances and installations, generally feature objects from everyday life: textiles, door bells, light bulbs and the like. Her best-known work is Electric Dress (1956), a burqa-like costume consisting of electrical wires and lit-up coloured lightbulbs. Tanaka wore the dress to exhibitions.

In the 2000s, Tanaka's works were featured in numerous expositions in Japan and abroad, including at the Kyoto National Museum of Modern Art, the Nagoya Gallery HAM, the New York Grey Art Gallery and Paula Cooper Gallery as well as at the Innsbruck Galerie im Taxispalais. Electric Dress and other works were on display at the 2007 documenta 12 in Kassel.

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