In Harmony with Water
Residing on Earth where 71% of the surface area is occupied by the seas means that we are constantly living in the midst of various phenomena caused by water. Tsunamis and typhoons that can instantly inflict disasters on human beings are merely natural phenomena on our aqua planet. Those phenomena and the Earth’s soft, white, atmospheric veil would look beautiful when viewed from a celestial distance.
In Maruyama’s work, the form of a leaf symbolizes all living creatures on Earth, including the human species. This form drifts about within the images of documented data on the past water-based disasters (tsunamis, typhoons, and floods) that humankind has documented from ancient times. This work is an attempt to visualize the history of the relationships between water-based phenomena that have occurred on our planet’s surface and human beings.
The height of a tsunami and the magnitude of an earthquake that causes a tsunami are natural phenomena that are outside of human control. But people’s capability to respond to natural disasters has advanced in accordance with time, which is reflected in the decrease in damages today, including the number of deaths. This development also applies to the higher level of accuracy in quantifying the phenomena and damages. The documentation on the water damage, which includes such transformations can be seen as a manifestation of the people who responded to the past natural phenomena, and as representing the relationships between people and water.
The leaf/life form in her work, which drifts about in the sea of documents on water disasters, also inherently possesses a great amount of water. We as organisms live comfortably in harmony with water, despite the fact that we are at times at the mercy of water, while also trying to prevent it from causing damage.
The yellow lines partition the age, the present day is in front, and the inmost line is B.C.11,000. The green lines partition the area, Sourtheast Asia, China, Japan, North and South America and Europe from left to right.
Maruyama expresses the scale of the disasters by the length of thick white rope, and the number of victims by thin light brown rope. One thread in the thin rope means 10 people.
rope, branch, color, tape
L.800cm x W.790cm x H.100cm, dimension variable
ZhuJiajiao Humanities Art Museum, Shanghai, China
[ZhuJiajiao・2018 Exhibition - What Exists Among Human and Water]