Friday, 2 July 2010

Just because

They do such great stuff. My newly purchased purple trousers somehow remind me of these pastels...

friends friends and an interview.

Adrian Favell: In the style of Morissy my first thoughts are - a  charming and intelligent man whose own nomadic lifestyle seems to mirror that of his sociological research subjects. Recently it has been the Japanese Contemporary Art Scene, artist, curator, student, random passer by alike, equally forming the transient network that constitutes the "scene".

Our interview here

Talking of which I have been contemplating friendship today. Is not "committing" to regular meet-ups a sign of a wiped out friendship? Reading So You Don`t Want to Go to Church Anymore makes me wonder about how much structure facilitates when basic care is not there. His argument is that people feel LOVE when they choose it freely, not when it is a duty, an obligation.

But if we don`t meet with others how can we build a friendship?. Of course many people, myself included can meet up with people we haven`t seen for years and still find a current connection, but is this something that we take for granted? When facebook friends are not necessarily people we meet with, what is real friendship?

Sunday, 27 June 2010

Sound and Shadows

The time has come, my little friend, for WHAT?
For sitting, sweating, feeling the underside of toes as they hit the ground.

People coming and going like the waves, many to Berlin it seems, or New York, Russia, Paris.

Meri Nikula leaves soon.

Saturday in a humid warehouse on the outskirts of northern Tokyo she gathered an array of performers for sound improvisations. LEAD Sister II - a man with self made instruments which bear a passing resembalance to characters from the robot pixar film and Tomomi Adachi - sound artist/poet accompanied a shaodow movements and light shows.  We also performed a shadow puppet theatre, a re-working of a piece from 10 years ago.

Adachi san`s  work is along the lines of Laurie Anderson, voice becomes fragmented and recombined sound but perhaps comparisons are like describing the taste of something. Until you try it you don`t really get it. His video work here.

Monday, 7 June 2010

Parks and Cardboard Tubes

The Aftermath of a busy project is my desire to sit under a tree, and not move. This was mildy interrupted by my friend Jo Tinsley`s suggestion that I attend the First Japanese Cardboard Tube Fighting League`s  event. Yoyogi on a gently cloudy day and about 30 people, some in fabulous carboard bunny ears and Samurai outfits gathered to fight with large cardboard tube in hand. The rules were simple, no hitting of the body and the first tube to break is out. My first (and only) opponent a Kendo master, I had no chance and I accidentally hit him so hard on the arm it gave him a big, red rash. Sorry about that. Usually based in SA worth checking out.

Mizumoto Park. You have a lake, you have wooded full of firs and redwoods. You have a large grassy area and this park is HUGE. Nearest station is Kanamachi on the JR Joban line. Take a no 7 bus and follow the old ladies with sun hats. I actually saw a topless man, an unusual site in the land of modest summer wear.

Being a now city girl I find myself living with inherant contradictions. A recent desire to wear high heels a lot, and my love of meadows, green in general. I tried to combine this during my recent sojourn to the Uk for the Bath Japanese Festival and my brother`s wedding, but it proved a little impractical, I am not quite Carrie Bradshaw yet.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Shantell Martin

VJ Designer and all round creative Shantell Martin is opening a gallery space in New York.

Called Garland and located in the Lower East Side of Manhattan

It`s selective about... design, and fashion, and will also serve as a space for kindred spirits to gather. Here we can amuse and inspire one another, share ideas, screen movies, and introduce natural and artisanal items, some of which you’d otherwise have to scour obscure corners of the desert to find.

We have events, too. Programming includes light meditation, sound immersion, creative aura field recordings, and unique yoga classes, as well as your regular ol’ art opening type things. And there’s more: Garland will also have its own in-house publication that’s sincere and informative, combining culture and news, featuring fantastic, well-edited writing with enormous personality.

Looks good.

Subtle Mob

Subtle Mob

Love this Bristol Bases artist/musician who creates soundscapes which can be listened to via downloading an mp3 and hearing it at an appointed time and place.

Due to come to Japan this year.

Bath Japanese Festival Update

We now how a twitter page up and running, and more and more people are getting involved, very excited but need to sleep ...

Sunday, 14 March 2010

Black Out Poet

Black out Poet

Nice little Onsen

I stayed here with my Japanese family the Kaori`s. The owner of the place was very fun and he gave us a brief tour of the area, including a traditional thatched "middle class" house, some strange scarecrows with the faces of dis-used gaijjin (foreign) dummies and the temple with its intricate washing rituals. water from right to left, same water wash the right hand and put into your mouth and spit out before replacing the utencil scoop side down back on the fountain. So many things in Japan seem to connect - with regards to the use of objects within rituals, c.f the tea ceremony.

Tomihiro Hoshino

富弘美術館  Do you know him?
He was a school gym teacher until at 24, a tragic accident left him paralysed from the neck down. He became a christian and started to paint using his mouth. At 33 he had his first exhibition in Gunma and went on to publish many books and essays.

I thought I vaguely recognized his work from my childhood, hanging on a calender in the kitchen. Flowers, deep reds or mauves or yellows with some squiggly text. If it was him I remember as a teenager turning up my nose at anything less than what I believed to be revolutionary art and poetry. My staple diet of reading at the time being Neitzche and Wittgenstein.

Now as the last bloom of my twenties fades I have re-discovered his work. It makes more sense after living in Japan, it is subtle, quiet. The kind of work that is humble enough to lack big bill boards and probably twitter links.

I was so moved by listening to the poems (in Japanese), I tried the English audio but somehow the strong male australian voice seemed incongruent. His poems and color are simple but lack artifice. They are similar to traditional Haiku in that it is what is not said that is moving. The connection to flowers is a sense of beauty and transcience, pain and hope.
This poem reads:
I have a wound
But your tenderness penetrated through the wounds.

Another one which particularly stuck me on a personal level was one about the Plum trees:

I climbed the river bank to see a fire
The river was in a  village on the other side of the river
The house where the fire broke out
was red like charcoal in the kotatsu heater
There were no sounds nor human voices heard
While I was sitting in the dark
I could smell the fragrance
of the flower

Thursday, 11 March 2010

2010 Bath Japanese Festival

Coming soon to a Library near you (if you live in Bath). co-organised my my good self - Rachel Carvosso and Haiku Poet Alan Summer. This looks set to be a hectic two weeks, but I am incredibly happy that it is going to be so varied and bring together my two loves art and poetry. I just need to get some sleep now!!!

See this in progress blog/site 2010 Bath Japanese Festival

Friday, 26 February 2010

VIVA microfinance

I am so encouraged by the stories of how microfinance is benefitting people, especially women. Here is a bbc article about the Women`s World Bank.

other groups include KIVA
and on that note a space in India encouraging women exiting prostitution, abuse relationships or trafficking situations Love Calcutta Art. 

While I adore art in the formal sense I cannot deny that I am very interested in PRAXIS. How can the ARTs be a postive catalyst for society? Of course musicians artists creators must manifest their own ideas. We are all different and I do nto mean to sound elitest but some can do nothing else, but there is an innate creativity which is so often lost. A creativity bourne from a desire to be, to know, to express, and yes to live.

I want to post more about both kinds of work.


I realise that this blog needs a bit of focus but I want to post about hawaii. This is the second time I visited there and what struck me again was the contrast with the hotels in Waikiki and the many homeless people on the street. I got chatting to a few, one guy was so dirty and seemed almost frightened to talk. A Colombian guy on the street (slightly paranoid with liquer in brown paper bag) told me there is big problem with drugs too.

It is also culturally a kind of half land between America and Japan with many tours and information points in Japanese. The North shore coastline provided a beautiful backdrop for a refreshing time of sunset watching and sleep. Perhaps all places which promise paradise (Thailand, The Caribean etc) promise a dream when perhaps the reality for local people is somewhat different.

Tokyo Sound Art Festival

various locations played host to the festival. Due to my recent haitus to hawaii I only caught two things, Mamrou`s best performance so far at Hongo Wondersite

listening to ice in a dark room
hanging ice in a light room
ice dripping and dropping
gentle sounds
at the end
he made coffee
and served it with a smile

photos to follow

And Meri Nikula performing in Ikebukuro.

I also had the good fortune to meet sound artist Peter Kutin whose performance I missed but you can find his work here.

Sunday, 17 January 2010

curator magazine article

Here is my piece about craft, and the slow movement.

new year

The time for new year resolutions!
I wrote an article about keeping them last year and am trying to take my own advise!

Here is my list for 2010
1. finish projects.
for me this is
a. song with Equator, I wrote this 2 years ago and we are still recording
b. Book arts exhibition
c. exchange project
d. bible workbook for kids
e. my own kids book with illustrations by starry luna and to be translated into japanese

2. eat more healthily
less chocolate more greens

3. be more generous
with time/resources
for me this is connected to being aware of the many things that I am lucky to have. I think giving should always be joyful or else there is no point.

4. Write everyday
I have been doing some form of writing everyday whether a journal, notes, poems etc and I want this to continue.

staying focused is the key perhaps.