You Who Are Creation#1909

Due to the geographical conditions set by the country’s physical location on the earth, the Japanese people have been plagued with natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunami, flooding, and mud slides. Despite the various prevention and safety measures that have been invented, nature has always found a way to overwhelm us with its might. Perhaps because of this fate throughout time, the spirit of adaptability and acceptance of natural phenomena seems to have been written into the DNA of the Japanese people.

The Aizu region of Fukushima, where I have been making art projects, has rich topographical characteristics—with mountains and rivers gently embracing the villages to create an undulating landscape. The people there have naturally come to honor the traditional gods and natural environment, with the spirit of harmoniously living with the nature there, because of the majestic scenery and the grace of the earth, bearing its years of history.

These environments and natural disasters remind us that human beings are only one of many living things that live on the surface of the earth. And since we are merely living our humble lifetimes as living creatures, it is invaluable that we exist by creating connections with others.  

The work makes these two worlds confront each other: the “human” world, and the “others of the non-human world of creation.” This “other” is not simply plants and animals, but also refers to the signs of life from the spirit of the earth and other creatures that can be felt when entering deep into the mountains, as well as the natural gods of the regions, and the celestial body. To co-exist with them, with our senses wide open. What are these “other” existences like in Finland? I seek to understand these things and think about the different.

There are various existences and phenomenon are expressed in the works in the three contiguous spaces. For example, human beings, beast, fish, butterfly, human psychology, Japanese festival, deer dance, and expressions related to the disasters that hit Tohoku (northeastern region in Japan). These works have imaginations to transcend boundaries between the different species, and are creating resonance.
Maruyama’s installation is in the middle of the central space. She expresses “human world” and “all living things and invisible existence”are facing one another.  When this work accepts and resonates with other expressions in three venues, both the work and whole exhibitions will be enriched.