Nobuo Sekine was born 1942 in Saitama Prefecture. He studied under Saito Yoshishige at the Department of Oil Painting at Tama Art University, graduating in 1968. Past graduation, he participated in the 8th Exhibition of Contemporary Art, the Open Air Contemporary Sculpture Exhibition at Suma Rikyu Park (Kobe), and the 5th Nagaoka Exhibition of Contemporary Art, with some of his works giving rise to controversy. Sekine counts as one of the central members of the Mono-ha movement. He exhibited at the Venice Biennale in 1970, and in 1973 founded Environmental Art Studio. In 1978, he exhibited at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art (Denmark), and a variety of other venues in Europe.
Phase: Mother Earth, Sekine’s most well-known work, simply is a cylindrical hole he dug out in Suma Park, with the soil from the hole formed into a cylinder and placed next to it. During its lifetime of merely a couple of weeks, this work made a lasting impression on the minds of the visitors. If he would have continued that work forever, at some point the earth would have been wholly dug up, and there would have been a new earth next to the space where the old one used to be… Phase: Mother Earth, maybe conceived as a thought experiment under the impact of topology, is a work of magnificent scale that established Sekine’s reputation in the art world.