Photo: Kazuo Fukunaga
In 2014, while on a sojourn to Tsushima Island in order to participate in an art project, Akira Kamo was told by the local people of sacred places in the mountains, off-limits to all. He learned that since there was no lumbering or cutting of the rich, green forest on the mountain, the woods of this “holy place” supplied an abundance of nutritious water to the sea, and therefore the protection of these woods was of great use to the local fishing industry.
At just that time, Kamo was working on a project dealing with the Great East Japan Earthquake (March 11, 2011), and as he thought about the no-entry zone surrounding the destroyed Fukushima No.1 Nuclear Power Plant, the word “anti-sanctuary” came to his mind, as the crystallization of the dark side of human knowledge. While “sacred ground” and “anti-sanctuary” are both forbidden zones, the ways in which they come about are in opposition. However, it is the thought of facing difficulties without averting our eyes which is the context of this title.
In this solo exhibition, nine oil paintings are exhibited including a large painting of 7.3 meters in width. Although all the paintings use the motif of snow-covered mountains, the sharp-focused impressions of Kamo’s paintings are meant to describe the “death zone” of mountain climbing. Rather than a specific mountain, these painting symbolize areas where human existence is difficult.
Thus, the people shown in the paintings are in conditions of danger. The people covered in flames as well as the well-equipped mountain climbers impart a sense of urgency; they are all “one step away from death.” Although scenery is an interpretation of space through the senses, these sensations are not pure; they are clarified by circumstances and affectations.
Information Provided by: Tachibana Gallery
Period: January 20,2016 (Wed) 〜 April 2,2016 (Sat)
Closed: Sunday, Monday, Tuesday
Venue: Tachibana Gallery