editor, writer and researcher, Tokyo
Andrew Maerkle (born 1981) is an editor, writer, and researcher who holds a degree in Comparative Literature and Society from Columbia University, New York. He is currently deputy editor of the Japanese bilingual online publication ART iT (International Edition), and a contributor to publications such as Art & Australia, Eyeline, and Frieze. From 2006 to 2008 he was deputy editor of ArtAsiaPacific in New York where he helped develop the annual ArtAsiaPacific Almanac, which contains reports on the state of contemporary art in 67 nations and territories from Turkey to the Pacific Islands. Maerkle has interviewed artists, architects, and thinkers including Yael Bartana, Naoya Hatakeyama, Toyo Ito, Isaac Julien, William Kentridge, Ryue Nishizawa, Kazuyo Sejima, and Katsuhiro Yamaguchi. He has also translated a series of quasi-fictional essays on contemporary China by the curator and author Hu Fang from Chinese into English. Maerkle lives and works in Tokyo.
During his residency at BAK, Maerkle develops his research into comparative intellectual histories by focusing on two situations: first, the March 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, and the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, which concomitantly generated an instantaneous archaeology of recent Japanese society; and second, the austerity measures reducing government support for the arts and prompting a reassessment of the priorities of artists and institutions in Europe. His research at BAK consists of interviews with artists (including Monica Bonvicini, Thomas Hirschhorn, Huang Yong Ping, Tadashi Kawamata, and Anri Sala) addressing themes such as the possibility for political expression and the instrumentalization of art in social regeneration projects. His research also entails short visits to cities such as Berlin and Beirut in order to investigate the idea that continuous postwar urban conditions offer alternatives to commercial and standardized modes of living.