Artwork No. sd13
Quartz by the sea
When you step into an empty house where no one lives, you feel something unusual that you don't sense in an occupied home. It resembles the feeling you get when putting on secondhand clothes.
Until now, the artist has employed a method of metaphorically breaking down the secondhand clothing into yarns, then rejoining those yarns so that the item is reborn in a new form. It has been a pursuit of a mystical presence whose true state, be it ephemeral signs, memories or whatnot, is uncertain.
An abandoned house in disuse for 20 or so years serves as the venue for this work. The structure was rebuilt with a storehouse on the first floor and living quarters for a young married couple on the second. Those living quarters for the young couple's family contains many items they once used. It seems like time stopped, like a clock that stops ticking the time when it loses power. Even after two decades, the traces of the family's life here remain untouched and on vivid display.
The storehouse, on the other hand, retains the clay walls of an old Japanese house. Items like an old wooden threshing machine remain, giving us in the modern day a sense for how the people of Shodoshima (and Japan) lived long ago--a way that is alien to us.
The materials for this piece are the venue, the abandoned home, which brings the memories of two different eras into one place. When visitors enter through the old wooden doors on the first floor, they look up from an older era on the first floor through a gap in the floor above to the second story, which dates back to a later era in the mid-20th century. On the second floor where the young couple's family resided is an art installation built from materials found in this room, thus creating a stronger impression of the vestiges of mid-20th-century life discovered here.
When us visitors from the modern age step inside, this abandoned home serves as a device to blend together three different eras, giving us an opportunity to consider the life we have in a time of constant, rapid change. Meanwhile, the artist also seeks to produce a work of art from the memories of people's lives in this area by using as materials items that are particular to the community when one steps out of the abandoned house: uniforms from now-closed schools (Ikeda Junior High School and Gamo Elementary School), exorcising arrows, a threshing machine and so on.