Tag Archives: japan

Waterscape / Memory of Spring

In the mountainous town of Hakone, a scenic waypoint between Tokyo and Kyoto, lies Lake Ashi. Boasting a stunning view of Mt. Fuji, numerous hot springs, and an abundance of natural hiking trails, the lake draws many visitors seeking a slice of tranquility. It’s here where the award-winning Tokyo-based design firm Moriuyiki Ochiai Architects unveiled their latest project.


美丽的芦之湖位于箱根,是一个地处东京和京都之间的山间小镇。这里除了富士山的壮丽景色,还有众多的温泉和自然远足径,吸引着许多寻求宁静的游客。Moriyuki Ochiai Architects,这家屡获大奖的东京建筑设计公司,在这里揭幕了他们的最新设计项目。

The Miruyiki Ochiai design team was tasked with renovating the domed foyer of an ex-botanical garden and turning it into a multifunctional space that’s able to accommodate a kitchen, dining space, and an area for live performances and art exhibitions. Using concrete, they laid out a new foundation for the space and constructed an octagonal amphitheater that serves as the centerpiece of this renovation project.


Moriyuki Ochiai Architects的设计团队需要改造一个旧植物园的圆顶大厅,将它变成一个由厨房,餐厅和一个展览演出区域组成的多功能空间。 团队用混凝土为整个空间构筑了新的基层,并建造了一个八角形的露天剧场,作为整个项目的标志性建筑。

With the goal of paying homage to water, which has lent its undeniable influence to the surrounding environment, they intended for the amphitheater stage to appear as if it were a well of water. To achieve this, they spread a transparent resin at the bottom of the amphitheater, which sits over an assortment of glass shards, mirror fragments, and metal plates. Tiered seating surrounds the spring, forming an intimate performance space. To further invoke imagery of water, specifically that of Lake Ashi, they injected a vibrant gradation of colors beneath the resin; this is to represent the different colors of the surrounding trees that reflect off the lake’s surface as the seasons change. The end result of Moriuyiki Ochiai Architect’s thoughtful redesign is a space that doesn’t detract from the beauties of the surrounding landscape. The project stands proudly as a symbol of the symbiotic bond that exists between man and nature.


由于水元素对当地环境有着十分重要的影响,因此,设计师以水井为灵感来设计了露天剧场的舞台。为了实现这一设想,他们在露天剧场的底部布满透明树脂,又在下面放满了玻璃碎片、镜子碎片和金属板。分层式的座位设计围绕着“水井”分布,形成一个小型表演空间。为了进一步突显水元素(尤其是芦之湖的水元素)这一意象,他们在透明树脂之下布满渐变的色彩层,以表达芦之湖四周的树木随季节变化映现在湖面时呈现的不同色彩。Moriyuki Ochiai Architects的这一设计并不会将人们的目光从周围的美丽自然景观中移开,恰恰相反,它代表了人与自然之间存在着的共生联系。

Website: moriyukiochiai.com
Facebook: ~/moriyuki-ochiai-architects

 

Contributor: David Yen
Photographer: Takumi Ota
Images Courtesy of Moriyuki Ochiai Architects


网站: moriyukiochiai.com
脸书: ~/moriyuki-ochiai-architects

 

供稿人: David Yen
摄影师: Takumi Ota
图片由Moriyuki Ochiai Architects提供

Black Waves

 

无法观看?前往优酷

teamLab‘s digital installations are a roving series of artistic works that utilise light, sound, movement and motion to create interactive spaces. Recently, teamLab brought Dance! Art Exhibition, Learn & Play! Future Park to Taipei’s Huashan 1914 Creative Park, where the exhibition will remain until April 9th.


日本艺术团体teamLab所创作的数字装置是一系列利用光、声音和动作来创造互动空间的艺术作品。近日,teamLab在台北华山1914文化创意产业园区举办了名为《Dance!Art Exhibition, Learn & Play! Future Park》的展览,展览将一直持续至2017年4月9日。

Amongst the many vibrant installations, Black Waves stands alone as an emotive showcase of one consistent scene – that of the unforgiving great ocean. Upon entering the exhibition, visitors are boxed in to dark room, illuminated only by the rolls and roars of crashing waves.


在众多艺术装置中,《Black Waves》脱颖而出,它是无间断影像装置,通过不间断的海浪画面,引发观众的情感共鸣。一进入展览,观众就置身于黑暗的空间中,只剩层层翻滚的海浪发出的亮光。

The waves themselves are computer generated in a 3D virtual space and presented as a continuous body. This was achieved by calculating the interactions of hundreds of thousands of particles. These particles were then extracted and lines were drawn in relation to their movement to create the artwork; teamLab refers to this technique as creating an ultra-subjective space.


这些海浪是电脑模拟出的3D虚拟空间,连续不断地出现。创作者需要对几十万颗粒的相互作用进行计算,然后提取出这些颗粒,根据颗粒的动作绘画出线条,从而创作出这一艺术作品。teamLab 称这种创作方法为“创作超主观空间”。

Beyond the crushing sound of the ocean’s waves, which was designed by Hideki Takashashi, the exhibition remains mostly quiet. Visitors feel completely immersed into the exhibition – as time passes, it will almost feel as if the waves are physically engulfing all your senses. Beyond being an artistic spectacle, Black Waves is a solace for visitors who seek to soothe their mind. Despite it’s looping facade, one could easily spend hours here.


装置中的海浪声由Hideki Takashashi创作,除了这些海浪声之外,整个展览大部分时候都是安静无声的。观众能充分沉浸于展览中。随着时间的推移,让人感觉到好像海浪正席卷身体所有的感官。《Black Waves》除了是一个奇妙的视觉作品,更能抚慰和平静观看者的内心。尽管所有画面都是循环出现,但置身于展览中让人一不小心就会度过数小时。

teamLab remarked that Black Waves was inspired by Japanese paintings of oceans and rivers, where by these bodies of water were expressed as a series of lines; these lines allow the viewers to see the waves as a living entity. “This is a way of seeing the world that lures us in and allows us to feel that there is no boundary between ourselves and nature.”


teamLab表示,《Black Waves》受到了日本有关河流和大海的绘画作品的启发。在这些绘画作品中,画家多通过线条来表现水体,让观众将海浪看作是一个生命体。“这是一种观察世界的方式,十分引人入胜,让我们觉得自己与自然融为一体,没有分界。

Websiteteam-lab.net

 

Contributor & Photographer: Whitney Ng
Video and Additional Images Courtesy of teamLab


网站: team-lab.net

 

供稿人与摄影师: Whitney Ng
视频与附加图片由teamLab提供

Ghost Town Ni Naru

French-Canadian photographer Jasmin Gendron began learning his way around photography from the dark rooms of his local high school. As of 2010, he began to shoot predominantly in digital, whilst occasionally shooting 35mm film for personal projects.


法裔加拿大摄影师Jasmin Gendron开始接触摄影是在家乡高中学校的暗房里。在 2010 年之后,他多数用数码相机拍摄,不过有时在创作个人作品的时候也会用到35毫米胶片相机。

“I try to use street photography to immortalize energy and emotions from magnificent, human and sometimes comical scenes, with a poetic, subtle and unobtrusive approach.” Jasmin describes himself as an autodidact, with the inspiration behind his photography style stemming from Japanese culture. He spent a full year immersing himself into Japan and actively absorbing his new surroundings. “I like how the environment impacts human actions and decision in peoples’ everyday lives.”


“我希望能通过街头摄影,以一种诗意、微妙而不显眼的方式定格壮观、人性甚至是滑稽的场面。”Jasmin形容自己是一名自学者,他的摄影风格受日本文化影响。他在日本生活了整整一年,深入探索和了解这个全新的环境。”周围的环境会如何影响到一个人在生活中的行为和决定,我对这个话题还蛮感兴趣的。“

Jasmin’s photo series Ghost Town Ni Naru was captured over a two-year period in his wife’s hometown of Nikko in Japan’s Tochigi prefecture. Jasmin had been subconsciously observing the city for the past decade, and describes it as his perception of a “grotesque scene,” in the sense that Nikko was slowly becoming a ghost town. This project is an active reminder that no place is unchanging and the sense of loss is acutely expressed throughout each image.


Jasmin的摄影作品系列《Ghost Town Ni Naru》是他在妻子的故乡——栃木县日光市生活的两年期间所捕捉的影像。Jasmin一直下意识地在观察这个城市在过去的十年的发展,研究日光市是如何渐渐变成今日的一座鬼城,而他称这种变化为一种“奇景”。视觉上,这系列作品提醒着人们,没有一个地方是永恒不变的。他的照片中总透露着一种失落的情绪。

Whilst Nikko may be well known for its beautiful traditional shrines and temples, this project seeks to present an aspect of Japanese culture that does not conform to the stereotypical idea of Japan. “This is a sad series. I tried to capture how it must feel for my wife, for her family members and friends, when they take a deeper look at the places where most of their memories come from.”


虽然日光市可能一向以其美丽的古老神社和寺庙而闻名,但这系列作品想展现的是日本文化不为人知的一面,是有别于人们对日本的传统印象的。“这是一个略带感伤的作品,我试着记录我的妻子和她的家人朋友们,在面对这个充满回忆的地方时,心中涌现的感情。”

Websitejasmingendron.com
Instagram@jasgendron

 

Contributor: Whitney Ng


网站jasmingendron.com
Instagram: @jasgendron

 

供稿人: Whitney Ng

Finding Inspiration in Uncertainty

Yuma Yoshimura is a Japanese artist, painter, and muralist who creates psychedelic, monochromatic works that reflect the uncertainty and chaos of human existence. In 2004, he completed his education at Tama Art University where he studied painting and printmaking. Currently based in Tokyo, his work has been well-received internationally, having been exhibited in South Africa, Spain, Russia, and more.


Yuma Yoshimura是一名日本的艺术家、画家和壁画家,其创作的单色作品充满迷幻的风格,表达出人类生存的混乱与不确定性。他曾在多摩美术大学学习绘画和版画创作,2004年毕业之后,他生活在日本东京。他的作品曾在南非、西班牙、俄罗斯等国家发表。

The primary themes of Yuma Yoshimura’s work lie in the uncertainty and chaos that people experience in daily life, or in concepts of duality and opposition such as “darkness and light.” For him, these are universal conditions that all people face as they grow from childhood to adulthood. To believe in the unchanging in the face of the ever-changing, and to express this dynamic visually is a reflection of the artist’s own resistance to unrelenting change.


Yuma Yoshimura的作品主题主要围绕人们在日常生活中经历的不确定性和混乱,或是二元性和对立概念,如“黑暗与光明”。对他来说,这是所有人从孩童到成年人的成长过程中都必定面临的普遍状况。在千变万化中相信永恒不变,以视觉作品来表现变化的动态,反映出这名艺术家自己对于无情变化的抵抗。

For Yuma Yoshimura’s creations, he primarily works with acrylic paint, spray paint, markers, aluminum and wooden panels. For mural-sized works, he’ll only use monochromatic acrylic paint and spray paint – his decision is largely based on the physical characteristics of the wall, which include its size and the surrounding environment.


Yuma Yoshimura的创作过程主要利用丙烯涂料、喷漆颜料、马克笔、铝和木板。至于壁画尺寸的大作品,他会根据墙体的物理特性、大小和所产生的空间效果,直接在墙壁上使用单色丙烯涂料和喷漆颜料进行创作。

Despite using a simple, monochromatic palette, Yuma Yoshimura is able to conceive a multitude of visual elements through complicated compositions that mirror his inner state. The visual elements seen in traditional tribal tattoos and ornaments also fuel the sparks of his imagination. This influence from these primitive arts reflect Yoshimura’s attempt to express his own unique, but universal, human experience.


虽然创作中只使用了一种色彩,但Yuma Yoshimura依然能够通过复杂的构图来表现出丰富多样的视觉元素,传达出他的内心状态。部落纹身和装饰品这些视觉元素激发了他的创作灵感。来自原始部落的艺术影响反映出Yoshimura尝试表达的一种独特又普遍的人性经历。

Website: yumanizumu.jp
Facebook: ~/yumanizumu
Instagram@yuma_yoshimura

 

Contributor: George Zhi Zhao
Images Courtesy of Yuma Yoshimura


网站: yumanizumu.jp
脸书: ~/yumanizumu
Instagram@yuma_yoshimura

 

Contributor: George Zhi Zhao
图片由Yuma Yoshimura提供

Yen Tech

 

无法观看?前往优酷

Yen Tech is the brainchild of Nick Newlin, a visionary Korean American artist who creates genre-breaking music and visuals immersed in dystopian, futuristic worlds. His first full-length debut album Mobis was recently released through Shanghai-based record label SVBKVLT. A manic reflection on self and society, Mobis takes us through apocalyptic soundscapes that reference electronica, rap, and K-pop to bring the artist’s vision to life. Neocha spoke to Yen Tech about his thoughts on identity, culture, and creativity.


Yen Tech는 환상적이고 미래 지향적인 세계에 몰입하여 장르 파괴적 음악과 영상을 창조하는 환상적인 한인 아티스트인 닉 뉴린 (Nick Newlin)의 창조의 산물입니다. 최근 상하이에 기반을 둔 레이블인 SVBKVLT를 통해 그의 첫 번째 장편 데뷔 앨범인 Mobis가 발표되었습니다. 자기 자신과 사회에 대한 격정이 반영된 Mobis는 일렉트로니카, 랩, K-pop을 아우르는 묵시적인 사운드 스케이프를 통해 삶에 대한 예술가의 비전을 실현하고 있습니다. Neocha 는 Yen Tech와 함께 정체성, 문화 및 창조성에 대한 그의 생각에 관하여 이야기를 나누었습니다.

Take a listen to some of our favorite tracks from Mobis below. The full album is available for purchase on iTunes.

 Yen Tech – Armored Core
 Yen Tech – Holo Mode
 Yen Tech – Lotus


아래의 Mobis에서 사람들이 가장 선호하는 몇 개의 트랙을 들어보시기 바랍니다. 전체 앨범은 iTunes에서 구입할 수 있습니다.

 Yen Tech – Armored Core
 Yen Tech – Holo Mode
 Yen Tech – Lotus

Neocha: How did the Yen Tech persona come into existence? Is he a true representation of your personality or a fictional character?

Yen Tech: It’s a bit of both. My early work was focused on these really broad pop structures and the idea of the idol. So it went hand in hand where if you listened to my music or saw my videos you would maybe ask, “Is this guy for real?” I guess I like that kind of dissonance, where there’s a shiny veneer but something more complex underneath. Now Yen Tech is evolving to the point where that veneer is stripping away, and we can see a darker undertone where he’s not only projecting this sort of irrational confidence but also revealing his inner turmoils and paranoias. I guess in that way it’s sort of a split personality or a mirror to my own obsessions and neuroses. I created Yen Tech as this empty vessel, but he’s slowly gaining consciousness.


Neocha: 엔 테크 페르소나는 어떻게 생겨났습니까? 그는 당신의 성격을 진실로 대변하는 존재인가요 아니면 단순한 허구의 캐릭터인가요?

Yen Tech: 두 가지 모두가 조금씩 섞여 있다고 할 수 있습니다. 저의 초기 작품은 정말로 광범위한 팝의 구조와 아이돌의 개념에 초점이 맞추어져 있습니다. 그 두 가지가 같이 접목되어 있기 때문에 제 음악을 듣거나 비디오를 본 사람들은 “이 사람 진짜야?”하고 묻게 되지요. 제 생각에 저는 그런 불협화음을 좋아하는 것 같습니다. 이를테면, 겉으로 보기에는 화려한 무늬목이지만 그 이면에는 훨씬 더 복잡한 무엇인가가 존재하는 것 같은 것 말이죠. 이제 엔 테크는 그 표면의 무늬목이 벗겨지는 지점으로 진화하고 있습니다. 그러면 사람들은 바로 그 이면의 비합리적인 자신감뿐 아니라 내면의 혼란과 편집증적 모습이 내재된 그의 어두운 면까지도 보게 되는 것이죠. 저는 그런 식으로 엔 테크를 저의 또 하나의 인격이나 저 자신의 강박 관념과 신경증에 대한 일종의 거울이라고 생각하고 있습니다. 엔 테크라는 일종의 빈 껍데기를 만든 것은 저이지만 그는 서서히 자신의 의식을 만들어가고 있는 것입니다.

Neocha: How do you channel your creative energy?

Yen Tech: For me, it’s all about world building. I approach Yen Tech the same way you would design a video game or write a novel. It has its own specific language and context. It’s not really enough for Yen Tech to just be a rapper, or a singer, and to be out here trying to get Soundcloud plays and tours, although I do those things as a platform. I treat the whole project more like an abstract narrative, and I try to apply that to all aspects, including the music and the visuals.


Neocha: 당신의 창조적 에너지는 어떤 채널을 통해 전달합니까?

Yen Tech: 제게 있어서 그것은 세계적인 건물과도 같은 것입니다. 저는 엔 테크에게도 비디오 게임 디자인이나 소설을 쓰는 것과 같은 방식으로 접근합니다. 모두 각각 자체 고유의 언어와 문맥을 가지고 있는 것이지요. 엔 테크는 단순히 래퍼나, 가수가 되려고 하는 존재는 아닙니다. 물론 사운드 클라우드 (Soundcloud)를 플레이하고 투어나 다니려고 만들어지지도 않았고요. 그런 모습들은 단순한 플랫폼에 지나지 않습니다. 저는 전체 프로젝트를 더욱 추상적인 서사의 형식으로 다루고 싶고 이 방향성을 음악과 영상을 포함한 모든 측면에 적용 하려고합니다.

Neocha: A lot of your work has a global, pan-Asian feel. How do you identify culturally?

Yen Tech: I’m a half-Korean American, but being mixed is sort of an interesting thing. I’m not really sure how to identify myself, and honestly, I’m kind of into that. It’s not some futuristic idea per se, but I do think that in today’s world, being some sort of global hybrid is necessary. I’ve tried to embody that with my project. In the end, I think these lines don’t really matter, we all come from the ocean anyway.


Neocha: 당신의 많은 작업에서는 글로벌하고 팬 아시아적인 느낌이 납니다. 이 작업을 문화적으로 어떻게 규정할 수 있을까요?

Yen Tech: 나는 한국계 미국 혼혈입니다. 하지만 혼혈이란 흥미로운 일이지요. 저는 저 자신을 어떻게 규정해야 할지 잘 모르겠습니다. 솔직히 말해서 그 문제에 집중하고 있는 것도 사실입니다. 미래에도 반드시 그럴지는 잘 모르겠지만, 현대에 있어서 일종의 글로벌 하이브리드는 필요하다고 생각합니다. 저는 그것을 제 프로젝트로 구현하려고 했었습니다. 하지만 결국에는 이런 구분이 의미가 없다는 것을 깨닫게 되었습니다. 우리는 모두 바다 너머 어디에선가 이주해온 사람들이니까요.

Neocha: Can you tell us about your upcoming plans?

Yen Tech: I’m working on a new record right now, and it has a very unexpected sound. The goal is to make it this very massive, sprawling experience. Before that, I’ll be releasing another video or two, one of which was for the Berlin Biennale and done in collaboration with Korakrit Arunanondchai, Alex Gvojic, and boychild – it’s pretty insane. Also, I really want to try and come back to China soon and do a performance, like maybe on top of a mountain. Stay tuned.


Neocha: 앞으로의 계획에 대해 말씀해 주실 수 있습니까?

Yen Tech: 지금은 새로운 녹음을 하는 중인데, 전혀 예기치 않은 사운드입니다. 매우 거대하고 폭넓은 경험을 하는 것이 목표입니다. 앞으로 한 두 장의 비디오를 발표할 예정인데 그중 하나는 베를린 비엔날레 출품용입니다. 코라크리트 아루나논드차이(Korakrit Arunanondchai), 알렉스 그보치(Alex Gvojic) 그리고 보이차일드(boychild)와 콜라보를 했는데 좀 파격적입니다 그리고 저는 정말로 곧 중국으로 돌아와 퍼포먼스 같은 것을 해 보고 싶습니다. 산 위 같은 데서요. 관심을 가지고 계속 지켜봐 주세요.

Website: yentech.net
Facebook: ~/yentechonline
Instagram~/yentech

 

Contributor: George Zhi Zhao
Images Courtesy of Yen Tech


웹사이트: yentech.net
Facebook: ~/yentechonline
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1972

In post-war Japan, cities victim to firebombings were left in a state of ruin and despair. But in the wake of devastation, some Japanese architects optimistically saw opportunity; they saw a chance to prove the country’s resilience, rebuild their cultural identity, and transform the nation into an improved version of its previous self. During this period of time, the influential architectural movement known as Metabolism was born, revolving around the concepts of organic growth and megastructures. The idea was that buildings didn’t have to be static; instead, they could be ever-changing, adapting and transforming according to different needs. One of the most iconic buildings of the movement—the Nakagin Capsule Tower—can still be found today in Tokyo’s Ginza District. Built by the famous architect Kisho Kurokawa, the unique structure consists of 140 removable capsules plugged into two concrete cores and is the main subject of Noritaka Minami’s photo book 1972, named after the year that the building was officially completed.


戦後の日本、爆撃の被害を受けた都市が廃墟と化し、絶望的な状況に陥りました。しかし、そのような焼け野原に好機を見出した建築家達がいました。日本の回復力を示し、文化的アイデンティティを再構築し、国を元の姿の改良版に変えるチャンスだと考えたのです。この当時、有機的成長およびメガストラクチャーの概念を中心に展開する影響力の高い建築運動「メタボリズム」が生まれました。それは、建物が静的なものである必要はなく、様々なニーズに合わせて絶えず変化し、順応し、変形できるものという発想でした。この運動の最も象徴的な建築物の一つが、今も東京・銀座に建つ中銀カプセルタワービルです。有名な建築家、黒川紀章設計のこの特異な構造は、2本のコンクリートコアに繋がった取り外し可能な140戸のカプセルで構成され、この建物の竣工年にちなんだミナミ・ノリタカ氏の写真本『1972』の主題なのです。

Noritaka Minami is a Japanese-born and America-raised photographer who only began documenting the building in 2010. At the time, there was a sense of urgency to complete the project. “There was a very real possibility that it would be demolished and replaced with a more ‘conventional’ apartment complex,” says Minami. “As of today, the building does not face imminent destruction, but still faces a very uncertain future in regards to its preservation.” The building was experimental, a prototype that sought to explore the possibilities of alternative methods of urban living in the future. Through his photos, Minami wants to offer viewers an opportunity to see the past’s interpretation of the future.


日本で生まれ、アメリカで育ったミナミ・ノリタカ氏は、2010年にこの建物を記録し始めたばかりの写真家です。当時は、同プロジェクトを早急に完成させるという切迫感に苛まれていました。「この建物が取り壊され、もっとありきたりの共同住宅に建て替えられるという非常に現実的な可能性があったのです。」とミナミ氏は語ります。「今日現在、差し迫った取り壊しには直面していませんが、建物の保存についての将来は今も漠然としています。」この建物は、都市生活の代替的方法の可能性を探ることを目的とする原型でした。自身の写真を通じてミナミ氏は、過去における未来の解釈を伝える機会を見る者に与えたいと考えています。

“Each capsule is a container that has accumulated all of the moves and decisions that were performed by individuals over the course of four decades,” says Minami. “Although I do not directly depict the resident who occupies that space, I want each photograph to suggest that the capsule holds the history and presence of people who occupy or have occupied that space.” With respect to the inhabitants, his photographs are completely documentary in nature; objects, furnishings, and light were photographed as it were without any alterations on his part.


「カプセルはそれぞれ、過去40年に渡って個人が蓄積してきたあらゆる行動や決断が積み重なった容器です。」そうミナミ氏は述べます。「私は、この空間の居住者を直接描写しているわけではありませんが、写真の一枚一枚を通して、カプセルが留める住人の経歴や存在を暗示できればと思います。」居住者に敬意を払い、彼の写真は完全にドキュメンタリーの性質を持ち、物、家具、光は、手を加えられることなく、ありのままに撮影されています。

Shot on both medium and large-format cameras with an ultra-wide lens, Minami’s collection of images captures the nuances of each ten square meter living space, revealing the the ways each resident has adapted to the living conditions. “The limited space of a capsule also influences the amount of belongings each resident can possess, more so than a conventional apartment,” Minami mused. The restricted space of each capsule often leads to the majority of an inhabitant’s worldly belongings to sit out in plain view; To this effect, Minami saw each pod as an extension of each resident’s personality. “From a very early point in its history, the criticism against the Capsule Tower was that the individual units are too small and not flexible enough for everyday use,” he says. “Yet, the fact that these small rooms are still being occupied to this day demonstrate the residents’ ability to find new and unexpected applications within the limited area of ten square meters that go beyond the original vision of the building as urban homes for businessmen.”


超広角レンズを用いて、中判と大判両方のカメラで撮影されたミナミ氏の一連の写真は、各10平方メートルの生活空間のニュアンスを捉え、それぞれの居住者がいかにしてこの生活条件に順応していったのかを示すものです。「カプセル1戸の限られたスペースは、標準のアパートと比べて各居住者が保持できる所有物の量にもはるかに大きく影響します」とミナミ氏はつぶやきます。カプセルの限られた空間のため、住人の生活感あふれる所有物のほとんどが目につく場所に置かれることになります。このことから、ミナミ氏は各戸を住人それぞれの個性の延長とみなしました。「カプセルタワーの歴史のごく初期の段階から、この建物への批判といえば、個々の単位があまりにも小さく、日常の用途としては融通が利かないというものでした。」ミナミ氏は続けます。「それでも、この小さな部屋に現在まで住居者がいることを考えれば、10平方メートルという限られた領域内で、ビジネスマンのための都会の住居という当初の構想を超越する斬新で予想外の応用法を見つける住人の才覚がうかがえます。」

As the Nagakin Capsule Tower is a private building, gaining access can be rather difficult for non-residents. “The project was only possible through the generosity of the couple that first allowed me to visit their capsule during the summer of 2010,” Minami explained. Many of the photographs in the book were made possible through the couple’s acquaintances in the building. By luck, Minami eventually met others in the building who granted him permission to document their pods, offering a candid glimpse into their living space.


中銀カプセルタワーは民間の建物であることから、部外者が建物内に入るのは容易ではありません。「このプロジェクトは、2010年の夏、初めてカプセル訪問の許可をくださったご夫妻のご好意なくしては実現不可能でした」とミナミ氏は説明します。この本に掲載された写真の多くは、この建物に住む同夫妻の知人を介して実現したものです。運良く、ミナミ氏は他の住人とも出会い、彼らの住居を記録し、住空間のありのままの姿を垣間見る許可も得たのです。

During the time that Minami worked the project, the people that chose to live in the building came from all walks of life, ranging from a young local art student attending university to a construction worker in his sixties. What attracted each resident was different: some were interested in its historical significance, some were curious about living in an unconventionally built structure, and others lived there for practical reasons like convenience and affordability. Although many residents are in favor of preserving the building, aware of its history and cultural significance, there are some residents who aren’t as keen, seeing the potential of maximizing the prime real estate that the building sits on by replacing it with a newer apartment.


ミナミ氏がこのプロジェクトに取り組む間、この建築物を住居として選んだのは、地域の若い美大生から、60代の建設作業員まであらゆる階層の人々でした。この建物に惹かれた理由は居住者によって様々で、建築物の歴史的意味合いに興味を持つ者もいれば、異例な形で建設された構造に住んでみたいという好奇心から、さらには便利で安価という実用的な理由から住む者もありました。居住者の多くが、カプセルタワーの歴史的・文化的意味合いを認識した上で保存に賛成する一方、この建物が立地する一等地を最大限に活かして新しい集合住宅に建て替える可能性を支持することから、保存に賛成できないという住人もいます。

Minami’s book was finally published last year, made possible with a successful Kickstarter campaign and a grant from the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts. “The idea of presenting this project as a photo book attracted me because the format could show more photographs than what is normally possible within the physical space of a gallery,” he explained. “Designing the book also presented challenges and possibilities that are different from designing an exhibition. I learned a lot by creating the specific selection and sequence of images in order for the series to be experienced as a book.” 1972 is now available online through Amazon and other select retailers.


ミナミ氏の本は、成果の高いKickstarterのキャンペーンおよびグラハム財団高度美術研究基金からの助成金を得て、昨年ようやく出版されました。「このプロジェクトを写真本として発表するアイデアに惹かれたのは、この形ならギャラリーの物理的空間で展示可能な数より多くの写真を公開できるからです」とミナミ氏は説明します。「この本のデザインは、展覧会を構成するのとは違った課題や可能性を示すものでもありました。写真の具体的な選択や順序付けにより、本として一連の情景を手に取るように感じられるよう制作する中で多くを学んだのです。」『1972』は現在、Amazonや他の一流の小売業者によりオンライン販売中です。

Websitenoritakaminami.com

 

Contributor: David Yen
Images Courtesy of Kana Kawanishi Art Gallery


ウェブサイトnoritakaminami.com

 

寄稿人: David Yen
Images Courtesy of Kana Kawanishi Art Gallery

Japan, Pixelated

Since 2011, Japanese illustrator Toyoi Yuuta has been posting animated GIFs on his Tumblr under the moniker 1041uuu. Finding beauty in simplicity, he’s translated his vision of life in Japan into gorgeously animated pixel art. The highly approachable style of his pixel art has allowed his work to be widely praised and shared by netizens from all over the world. At the same time, Generation Xers, millennials, and gaming enthusiasts are able to more deeply appreciate the nostalgic qualities of his retro aesthetics.


2011年以来、イラストレーターの豊井祐太氏(ユーザー名:1041uuu)は、自身のTumblrにGIFアニメーションを掲載してきました。シンプルながらも美的な作品には、日本のライフスタイルがきれいなピクセルアートのアニメーションとして映し出されています。とても親しみやすいピクセルアートスタイルの作品は世界中のネチズンから絶賛され、広く知れ渡っています。その一方でジェネレーションXやミレニアル世代、そしてゲームマニアらは、レトロな美しさの中に感じられる懐かしい感覚を高く評価しています。

Originally born in Fukushima, Toyoi is currently based out of Kyoto, preferring the quiet pace of life there compared to the sensory overload of Tokyo, where he had previously lived for six years. In those six years, Toyoi found solace and inspiration in different aspects of the Tokyo that many might not immediately associate with the city, such as its rivers. “I think I’ve been influenced by the unique rivers of all the cities I’ve lived in. In particular, Tokyo’s Sumida River had a profound impact on me,” he says. From a cityscape reflected on the rippling surface of a river to koi fish idly lazing beneath a lotus leaf-covered pond, water makes frequent appearances in Toyoi’s work and is often one of the most noticeable animated elements.


福島出身の当人は、6年間暮らした東京から離れ、現在はゆったりとしたペースで暮らせる京都を拠点に活動しています。この6年間の暮らしで、すぐには東京とは思えない川など、この大都市の様々な一面から憩いを感じ、インスパイアされました。「これまでに住んだ街では、それぞれの川が持つ特徴に影響されたと思います。特に隅田川には大きく影響されました」と言います。波打つ川の表面に映る都市の景観や、蓮の葉に覆われた池を泳ぐ鯉など、多くの作品では水が見られ、これは最も目立つアニメーション要素の一つとなっています。

Another big influence for Toyoi is the popular arcade-style fighting game, The King of Fighters. The different two-dimensional background scenes in the game clearly lends inspiration for his animated GIFs. These in-game backgrounds range from forests with falling rain and leaves fluttering in the wind to industrial settings with machinery bellowing out clouds of steam. Some other scenes might depict more mundane moments of city life, such as lovers interacting in the background and blinking traffic lights. These little moments stuck in an infinite loop fascinated Toyoi. “To an art geek like me, these elements sparked something within me and I became interested in these realistic backdrops,” he says. Similar to the aesthetics of The King of Fighters and other retro fighting games, animating select details in a mostly still frame has become the trademark of Toyoi’s work.


他にも当人が大きな影響を受けたものとして、人気の高いアーケード型格闘ゲームのザ・キング・オブ・ファイターズがあります。このゲーム特有の二次元背景が、GIFアニメーションのアイデアを生んだことは言うまでもありません。このゲームでは、雨のなか風に揺られて木の葉が舞い散る森から、蒸気雲が吐き出て工場が密集する工業地帯に至るまで、様々な背景が登場します。また、恋人たちが触れ合う様子や点滅する信号機など、都会のありふれた日常生活の一部が背景として登場します。このように、どこにでも見られるようなありふれた瞬間が魅力となったのです。「私のような芸術おたくにとってこのような要素が刺激となり、現実的な背景に興味をそそられるようになったのです」と言います。ザ・キング・オブ・ファイターズのようなレトロな格闘ゲームで得られる美的感覚と同様、静止画像の細かい部分をアニメーション化することが作品のトレードマークとなっています。

For many artists, figuring out how to make sustainable income while pursuing their creative vision can be problematic, and Toyoi isn’t an exception. He revealed that his initial decision to create pixel art was in part due to to the restrictive nature of the tools he had access to. “I was poor and unemployed. I didn’t have a pen tablet and only had a PC track pad. But to create pixel art, I don’t need a high-resolution computer or much special knowledge and training,” he recalled. Despite garnering high praise for his GIFs, the popularity of his work still hasn’t translated into any money-making opportunities. “I still don’t have any money at the moment, so I’m trying to sell some of my artwork now,” Toyoi candidly admitted. “I’m looking into selling silkscreen prints in the near future.”


他の多くのアーチスト同様、芸術を追求する一方で生活を維持するための収入を得ることは、今でも抱えている悩みです。作品を作り始めた頃にピクセルアートに取り組もうと決めた理由として、手に入るツールには限りがあったことを掲げます。「職にも就かず、お金もありませんでした。ペンタブレットもなく、持っていたものはコンピューターのトラックパッドだけです。ただ、ピクセルアートを制作するには高画質のコンピューターや、専門知識と研修もそれほど必要ありません」と過去を振り返ります。GIF作品が高く評価されたとしても、それが収入の機会に繋がったわけではありません。「今もお金はありません。だからこそ、作品を売ろうとしています。近い将来、シルクスクリーンプリントを売ろうと思っています」と心のうちを語ってくれました。

Introverted by nature, Toyoi tells us that people aren’t of much interest to him. Instead, his interests lie in the intangible, such as the feelings and smells of a place, holding the belief that these are the elements that truly make up the essence of a city. “The world is filled with rules that aren’t explicitly written out, and it feels like I’m not very good at reading them, because I don’t understand these unspoken codes. I find society to be a scary place,” he says. Toyoi’s work is a tranquil respite from the whirlwind of unpredictability, volatility, and anxiety that plague our modern lives. His gift lies in the way that he’s able to invoke a blissful sense of tranquility by simply presenting the nuanced beauties of life that many overlook, rendering these ordinary moments into gorgeous works of art.


当人はもともと内気な性格なため、特に人物に関わるテーマには関心がありません。むしろ景観やそこから感じ取れる形のないものこそが、都会の本質を作り上げる要素だと考えています。「この世は明確に記されていないルールで溢れています。暗黙のルールを理解できない私は、そういったルールを読み取るのが上手くありません。社会は恐ろしい場所だと思っています」と言います。作品には、現代社会の悩みとなっている予想のできない世界観、移り変わり、そして不安から一時的に解放される様子が伺えます。当人の才能は、誰もが見落としがちな日常生活の微妙な美しさを表現し、ありふれた瞬間を見事な作品に描写することで、喜びや安らぎを感じさせる手法にあります。

It generally takes Toyoi two days to complete a GIF. The preliminary planning stages are admittedly much more difficult, he says. It’s crucial for him to avoid repetition. “Sometimes choosing the idea can take up to two weeks. Even now, two months can go by without me drawing anything,” he says. “For example, if I have already drawn a picture of a businessman asleep in a in a bus, then I would not draw a picture of a student asleep on a train.  There is no essential difference in my mind between the sleeping businessman and the sleeping student, or a train and a bus.”


通常、GIF作品を作るには2日かかります。事前のプランニングがかなり大変で、同じような作品を作らないようにする点が極めて大切だと言います。「アイデアを決めるまで2週間かかることがあります。今でも、何も描かずに2ヶ月が過ぎることもあります。例えば、バスの中で居眠りしているサラリーマンの絵を描き始めていたとすると、電車の中で居眠りしている学生の絵を描くことはありません。眠っているビジネスマンと学生や、電車とバスに本質的な違いはないと考えています」

“For now, I’ll be content if my work allows people to better appreciate the world around them. Japan has many problems, such as the threat of earthquakes, nuclear power plant accidents, distrust of the government, overworked people suffering from work-related stresses, and so on.” As if to counterbalance these large scale, hard-to-solve problems that trouble his mind, Toyoi’s charming GIFs instead hone in on the simple beauties of everyday life in Japan. “Regardless of some of the country’s issues, I want people to visit Japan. I certainly recommend Kyoto.”


「差し当たり、作品を見た人が、その人の周囲の環境を改めて認識するきっかけになってくれれば嬉しいです。日本は、地震の脅威、原発事故、政府への不信感、仕事のストレスで過労に悩む人々など、多くの問題を抱えています」と言います。このような、大掛かりで問題解決が難しい状況の中で、何かの埋め合わせとなるかのような魅力を持つGIF作品は、日本の日常生活のシンプルな美しさに焦点が当てられています。「一部の国が抱える問題はともかく、誰にでも日本に足を運んでいただきたいと思っています。もちろん、京都がお勧めです」

Tumblr: 1041uuu.tumblr.com
Instagram: @1041uuu

 

Contributor: David Yen


Tumblr: 1041uuu.tumblr.com
Instagram: @1041uuu

 

寄稿人: David Yen

The Post Town of Tsumago-juku

Lasting between 1603 and 1868 was the Edo era, one of the most prosperous periods of time in the history of Japan. During this time, Japan was under the rule of the Tokugawa shogunate, the last feudal Japanese military government, and the country’s 300 daimyō, the all-powerful feudal lords who ruled most of the land. Characterized by intensive economic growth, an excessively strict social order, isolationist foreign policies and a flourishing art scene, the Edo period played a profound role in the industrial, artistic and intellectual development of Japan.


日本の歴史上最も繁栄した時代の一つである江戸時代は、1603年から1868年まで続きました。当時の日本は、この国最後の封建制度下の軍政府であった徳川幕府の支配下にあり、全権力を握る領主として300人の地方大名が国土の大半を統治していました。著しい経済成長、過剰なほど厳格な社会的序列、鎖国政策、芸術的背景の開花に象徴される江戸時代は、産業面においても、芸術・知的面においても、日本の発展に重要な役割を果たしました。

Located in Nagiso, Nagano Prefecture, Tsumago-juku is the 42nd of the 69 post towns on the Nakasendō, a trade route that stretched over 530 km and connected modern-day Tokyo with Kyoto during the Edo period. As one of the most well-preserved towns in Japan, people stopping by Tsumago are usually visitors looking to experience an authentic slice of Japanese history and soak in the ambience of a historic Japanese post town.


長野県の南木曽町(なぎそまち)に位置する妻籠宿(つまごじゅく)は、江戸時代の商業街道として現在の東京と京都を結ぶ530 kmに渡って栄えた中山道六十九次のうち42番目の宿場でした。日本国内で最も保存状態に優れた町である妻籠宿を訪れる観光客らは、歴史的な日本の宿場町の雰囲気に浸り、日本史の真の一面に触れることができます。

Before becoming a part of the Nakasendō route, Tsumago was part of the Kisoji, a minor trade route running through the Kiso Valley. The town fell into poverty after the construction of the Chūō Main Line railway, which bypassed Tsumago. As a result, the town ended up being neglected for over a century. Yet, with enough dedication and effort from locals, over 20 houses were restored by 1971. Five years later, Tsumago was deemed as a Nationally Designated Architectural Preservation Site by the Japanese government and has since then become a fairly popular tourist destination.


中山道の宿場となる以前、妻籠宿は、木曾谷を抜ける比較的小規模な商業街道であった木曽路の一部でした。やがてこの町は、妻籠宿を迂回して建設されたJR中央本線開通後、貧困に陥ることになります。その結果、町は1世紀以上もの間、世間から忘れ去られた存在だったのです。それでも、地元住民の献身と努力の甲斐あって、1971年までには20軒を超える町の家屋が修復されました。そしてその5年後、妻籠宿は日本政府により重要伝統的建造物群保存地区に指定され、今日では人気の観光地となったわけです。

It only takes a short ten minutes to go through the entirety of Tsumago on foot. A myriad of wooden Edo-style temples, shrines and two-story inns are scattered along the street. Cars are strictly prohibited on the main road during the day, and all the power cables along with the telegraph lines are concealed. It’s details like these that brings forth the feeling of having traveled back in time for visitors.


妻籠宿の町全体を通り抜けるには徒歩で10分もあれば十分です。通りに沿って、江戸様式の木造の神社仏閣や二階建ての旅籠が軒を連ねています。日中は、車での本通りの通行は厳禁で、電信線のケーブル線はすべて見えないように隠されています。こういった細部が、過去に旅する気分を訪れる者に味わわせてくれるのです。

Different kinds of accommodations are available for travelers, including a rebuilt version of the town’s honjin, which used to be a major way station for government officials. It was the place where only feudal lords and other representatives of the shogunate would stay during their travels. Originally destroyed, the inn was reconstructed in 1995, but the new building still manages to retain the sense of charm that it once held during the Edo era.


町には旅行者向けに様々な宿泊施設があり、中には、幕府の官僚らが利用する宿舎であった本陣を改築した宿もあります。ここは、大名など幕府の役人らが移動中に滞在した場所でした。元の本陣が荒廃したのち1995年に再建されたものですが、江戸時代の栄華の名残を今も留めています。

The waki-honjin, which is a smaller version of the honjin, is the secondary inn. In the past, it accommodated travelers of lower status and retainers of the feudal lords. Reconstructed in 1877, the waki-honjin was rebuilt with Japanese cypress, which was actually prohibited by the government during those times. According to the rules, when two official parties were traveling through Tsumago, only the most powerful of the two could stay in the main honjin, while the other party must reside in the waki-honjin.


本陣の小型版、脇本陣は、補助的な宿泊施設を指します。かつて、ここには位が低い旅人や、大名の家来などが宿泊していました。1877年に再建された脇本陣は、当時幕府により使用が禁止されていた檜で再築されたものです。規則に則って、2つの役人団体が同時に妻籠宿に滞在した場合、格式が高い一行のみが本陣での宿泊を許され、もう一方は脇本陣の利用を余儀なくされていました。

The government has a set of stringent laws that prevents any of the buildings in Tsumago to be rented out, sold, or demolished. The town remains uninhabited nowadays, and its only the traditional craft shops and inns crammed with people during the tourist season that brings the sleepy town to life. But for people looking to experience a piece of Japanese cultural history, this quaint little town is a must-visit destination.


政府により、妻籠宿の全建築物の賃貸、売却、解体を防止する一連の厳しい法令が制定されています。現在この町には居住者がおらず、行楽シーズンには伝統工芸品の店舗と宿泊施設だけが観光客で賑わい、静かな町に活気が戻ります。日本の文化史を体験したい方にとって、この趣のある小さな町は、是非訪れたい場所と言えるでしょう。

Contributor: Anastasia Masalova
Photographer: Tutu


寄稿者: Anastasia Masalova
カメラマン: Tutu

Tokyo Compression

Tokyo Compression 12 (2010)

German-born artist and photographer Michael Wolf started his career as a photojournalist in 1994. After spending nearly a decade working in Hong Kong for the German magazine Stern, a lack of interest in many of his assignments and a lack of time for his personal projects led him to pursue fine art photography full-time in 2003. In 2004, he won first prize in the World Press Photo competition’s Contemporary Issues category for his compelling photo series China: Factory of the World where he captured workers in different types of factories. The award would be the first of many as his body of work continued to evolve and grow.


ドイツ出身アーチスト兼写真家のMichael Wolf は、1994年にフォトジャーナリストとしてそのキャリアを歩み始めました。香港に在住中の10年近くをドイツ系雑誌・Sternのジャーナリストとして過ごす間は、大半の職務に興味を見出せないまま、自分のやりたいプロジェクトが行えない日々を過ごす時期が続きました。そのような状況の中、2003年にプロの美術写真家に転向し、翌2004年には世界報道写真展の現代社会部門にて、様々な工場で働く労働者達の姿を捉えた作品集のChina: Factory of the World で初の賞を獲得しました。この賞はその後の作品の進化と成長や、多くの受賞作を生むきっかけになったのです。

Tokyo Compression 54 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 57 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 35 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 31 (2010)

In the years since, he’s become a significant name in the contemporary art scene, developing an exceptional body of work around life in the cities of China, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Chicago and Paris. His photographs are a profound embodiment of urban life, from Bastard Chairs and 100×100 to Transparent City and Real Fake Art among other numerous projects. Most of Wolf’s images display a unique internal look into peoples’ lives within both the suburbs and bustling centers of megacities. Through his photography, Wolf’s intent is to capture and present his vision of the dynamics of city life as well as his perspective on the turbulent nature of the urban environments. Tokyo Compression is one of those stark manifestations.


それ以来、当人は現代のアートシーンで重要な役割を担う存在となり、中国の他、香港、東京、シカゴ、パリなどの都市生活を描く素晴らしい作品を制作してきました。数多くの作品の中でも特にBastard Chairs100×100Transparent CityReal Fake Art は、都市生活の鋭い洞察が具体的に表されています。本人が想像するイメージの大半では、大都市の目まぐるしく動く中心部や、近郊の人々の生活を捉えた独特な眼差しが映し出されています。カメラのレンズを通して都市生活の原動力となるビジョン、そして都市という渦巻く環境を彼なりの視点で捉えて描こうとしたのです。その視点は、Tokyo Compressionプロジェクトに最もよく表されています。

Tokyo Compression 125 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 126 (2010)

First presented in 2010 as a book, Tokyo Compression is a photo series that consists of candid portraits of Japanese people inside the jam-packed Tokyo subway trains, a stream of nameless faces pressed up against a window wet with condensation. Creating a sense of hardship, the images depict an urban hell, a mental compression of sadness and despair, madness and anxiety.


2010年にまず単行本として発表されたTokyo Compressionは、東京の地下鉄の満員電車内でお互いが押し合いながらも汗まみれとなり、窓に押し付けられて何とも言えない表情が映し出された、日本人のありのままの姿を集めた作品集です。人々の苦労を映し出すイメージは、都市の苦しみ、悲しみに溢れた精神的な圧迫感、そして絶望、狂気、不安な様子が表されています。

Tokyo Compression 18 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 75 (2010)

Wolf’s photography has shown the adaptability of human spirit against adversity in one of the most ultimate urban environments: the city’s underground. Capturing the everyday commuter life in Tokyo’s subway, Wolf has managed to present the physical and mental reduction of privacy and space in the daily routine, imbued with a feeling of dismal, overwhelming and total vulnerability to the city.


写真からは、大都市の地下という最も過酷な環境において、逆境に耐えて順応しようとする人々の精神が伺えます。普段の東京の地下鉄の様子から私生活が奪われ、行き場が減ることで心身共に衰えゆく人々の様子と、大都市に対する優越感や圧倒感、そして心の弱さが表現されています。

Tokyo Compression 55 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 77 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 80 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 52 (2010)

In 2009, Wolf’s Tokyo Compression series won first prize in the World Press Photo Award’s Daily Life category. Now interchangeably living and working in Hong Kong and Paris, Michael Wolf continues to pursue his personal projects where he explores and reveals an inward world of big cities through his lens.


このTokyo Compressionシリーズは、2009年世界報道写真展の日常生活部門で最優秀賞を獲得しました。現在当人は、香港とパリを仕事と生活の拠点として活動し、レンズを通して大都市の奥深くを追いかけて表現する、独自のプロジェクトを手掛け続けています。

Tokyo Compression 17 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 66 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 123 (2010)

Micheal Wolf’s solo exhibition Hong Kong – Informal Solutions is now on display at the M97 Gallery in Shanghai. The new exhibit features photographs, video loops, and artifacts collected from the back alleys of Hong Kong.


上海のM97画廊では個展のHong Kong – Informal Solutionsが開催されています。新作が披露されているこの展覧会では、写真、動画ループ、香港の裏通りで見つかった工芸品が展示されています。

Websitephotomichaelwolf.com
Facebook: ~/michael-wolf

 

Contributor: Anastasia Masalova
Images Courtesy of Michael Wolf & M97 Shanghai


ウェブサイトphotomichaelwolf.com
Facebook: ~/michael-wolf

 

寄稿人: Anastasia Masalova
Images Courtesy of Michael Wolf & M97 Shanghai

Art Island Naoshima

Setouchi Triennale takes place in spring, summer and autumn once every three years and lasts for 108 days. It is held on the 12 islands of the Seto Inland Sea, including Teshima, Megijima, Naoshima, and so on. With the largest number of installations and public works on display in Naoshima, this remote island is one of the most popular destinations during the Triennale.


瀬戸内国際芸術祭は、トリエンナーレ形式で3年毎に春から秋にかけて108日間開催されます。豊島、女木島、直島など瀬戸内海に浮かぶ12の島を舞台にアート作品が展示されます。インスタレーションやパブリックアート作品が最も多く展示される離島、直島は、芸術祭開催中最も人気が高い目的地の一つです。

Designed by the world-famous architect Tadao Ando, the Chichu Art Museum lives up to its name (chichu means “underground” in Japanese); a very large part of the museum’s compound is indeed concealed underground. Surprisingly, it manages still to use natural daylight as its main source of light. Through Ando’s masterful design, he has engaged in a conversation between architecture and nature. The museum is also exhibiting Time/Timeless/No Time from the iconic American minimalist artist Walter de Maria, Claude Monet’s large-scale oil painting Water Lily, as well as the American contemporary artist James Terrell’s Open Sky – an installation work using light as the medium. It is very rare to witness the work of impressionist, modern and contemporary art in one single museum. This alone would be reason enough to pay a visit.


世界的な建築家、安藤忠雄氏の設計による地中美術館は、その名の通り、館内の大部分が地下に隠れています。それでも意外なことに、ここでは自然光が主な光源として採り入れられています。その卓越した設計で、安藤氏は建築と自然の対話を実現しました。この美術館では、アメリカのアイコン的ミニマルアート作家、ウォルター・デ・マリアの作品「タイム/タイムレス/ノー・タイム」、クロード・モネの大規模な油絵「睡蓮」、さらに、アメリカの現代アート作家、ジェームズ・タレルによる光を媒体としたインスタレーション作品「オープン・スカイ」を展示しています。印象派、近代・現代アートの作品を一か所で目の当たりにできるのは非常に稀なことです。この点だけでも、一見の価値がある美術館といえるでしょう。

Another must-see museum is the Lee Ufan Museum. Widely considered as the most well-established Korean contemporary artist, Lee Ufan was also one of the leading artists of the Japanese minimalism movement, which has had a significant influence in the world of contemporary art. The museum opened in 2010, and is now considered an architectural masterpiece and one of Tadao Ando’s most iconic creations. In this semi-underground building, the main visual design elements are the dots, lines, and surfaces; these elements, which are central in the works of both Tadao Ando and Lee Ufan, perfectly compliment each other in the space. Some of Lee Ufan’s large-scale installations and his early paintings are also on display in the museum.


もう一つ是非訪れたい美術館は李禹煥美術館です。最も評価の高い韓国人アーティストとして広く認められた李禹煥氏は、現代アートの世界に大きな影響を与えた日本のミニマリズム運動において優れたアーティストの一人でもありました。2010年に開館したこの美術館は、安藤忠雄氏の最も象徴的な作品の一つと考えられ、まさに建築の傑作です。この半地下の建物の内部で焦点を当てられたビジュアルデザインの要素は、点と線、そして面です。安藤氏と李氏、双方の作品の中枢をなすこれら3つの要素が、見事にこの空間で互いに調和しているようです。館内には、李禹煥氏の大型インスタレーション作品と初期の絵画作品のいくつかも展示されています。

After seeing the museum, visitors can also take a walk to the peaceful harbour of Naoshima where one can get an award-winning ice cream for only 550 yen and enjoy a beautiful sunset. Even though walking is a fairly feasible option for getting around, there are also busses running to most parts of the island. One bus is even decorated in Yayoi Kusama’s signature pumpkin patterns.


李禹煥美術館を訪れた後は、直島の静かな港まで散歩し、賞の受賞経験もある550円のアイスクリームを買って美しい夕陽を楽しむのも良いでしょう。周辺は徒歩でも移動可能ですが、島のほとんどの場所にはバスも運行しています。草間彌生氏独特のかぼちゃ模様で装飾を施されたバスも1台走っているほどです。

Also located on the island is the Art House Project, where artists have turned empty houses on the island into works of art. Visitors can easily access all of the revamped buildings by foot after getting off at one of many convenient bus stops. For the purpose of protecting the artworks, photography is forbidden in most of the houses. A local volunteer told me all the works showcased for the Art House Project will be kept permanently. Most of the residential housing on the island are built with wood, standing one next to the other in close proximity. All the windows and doors are smaller than normal, bringing a different yet interesting experience for city dwellers who visit. Even the houses themselves come in rather small sizes. The gardens and plants around the houses are beautifully and neatly arranged in a traditional Japanese style. Wandering around, you might also spot interesting details that reveal the tasteful eye of the house owners, such as a cute Tanuki sculpture or artwork made of recycling cans.


また、直島では、アーティストらが島に点在する古い空き家をアート作品に変えるプロジェクトも見られます。数多くの便利なバス停の一つで下車すると、改装された古民家には徒歩で簡単にアクセスできます。なお、ほとんどの家屋では、作品を保護する目的で写真撮影が禁じられています。地元のボランティアによると、家プロジェクトで公開された作品はすべて永久保存されるとのことです。直島の住宅の大半は木造で、家々が隣接して並んでいます。窓や戸はどれも通常より小さく、都会から訪れる者に一種独特の印象を与えます。家屋そのものも比較的小さいものです。人家の周囲の庭や植物は、伝統的な様式で美しくきちんと手入れされています。この辺りを歩き回ると、狸の彫刻や空き缶を再利用したアート作品などの細部に、各家の持ち主の趣味の良さを垣間見られるかもしれません。

Besides all the interesting museums, the island itself also has a certain charm that it offers. The wooden walls and rusty metal factories add a natural texture to the island, giving it a sense of mysterious beauty that can only come with old age. Walking around, you’ll spot even more artwork, such as interesting silhouettes of people made with lines of wool, which are attached to walls throughout the area. They’re often quietly hidden away behind corners, waiting to surprise you when you turn around. It almost felt like these whimsical artworks were playing hide-and-seek with the tourists.


これら興味深い美術館の他にも、直島には当地ならではの魅力があふれています。木の壁や錆びた金属工場が、時を経たものだけが持つ神秘の美を醸し出し、この島の自然な質感を漂わせるのです。散策を続けると、この地域のあちこちの壁に、毛糸の線で人の形に描かれ、貼り付けられたアート作品なども見られます。これらの作品は、密かに角の向こう側に隠れているものが多いため、ふと振り返ると驚かされます。まるで、気まぐれなアート作品が観光客とかくれんぼをしているかのようです。

Not far from Miyanoura Port lies the famous polka-dot pumpkin by Yayoi Kusama. It sits quietly by the sea and the water’s blue hues seemed to make the pumpkin’s yellow brighter than ever. Yayoi Kusama’s merchandise can be purchased at the Benesse House Museum, which also showcases other very interesting artworks. From there, you can head to a café located on the mountaintop to relax with a nice cup of coffee. It is the perfect place to bask in the sunlight, while embracing the gentle wind coming in from the beach. The tranquil vibes of the island, the cutting-edge architecture of the art museums, and the traditional Japanese houses all co-exist harmoniously, perfectly demonstrating the unique nature of Naoshima.


宮之浦港から程近い場所に、草間彌生氏の有名な水玉模様のかぼちゃがあります。海辺に静かに佇み、海の青い色調がかぼちゃの黄色をさらに色鮮やかに演出するかのように見えます。草間彌生グッズを販売するベネッセハウスミュージアムでは、他にも注目に値する作品の数々が展示されています。そこから山頂にあるカフェに向かい、のんびりコーヒーを楽しむこともできます。浜辺から吹くそよ風を受けながら日光浴するには最適な場所です。この島の穏やかな空気感、斬新な美術館建築、伝統の日本家屋、それらすべてが絶妙な調和で共存し、直島独特の自然を見事に示しているのです。

Websites:
setouchi-artfest.jp
benesse-artsite.jp

 

Contributor & Photographer: George Liu Zhen
Additional Image Courtesy of Chi Chu Art Museum


ウェブサイト:
setouchi-artfest.jp
benesse-artsite.jp

 

寄稿者&カメラマン: George Liu Zhen
Additional Image Courtesy of 地中美術館