“The fox and the jewels” is the title of an essay about the Inari worship in Japan. The author thinks that people choose the fox as symbol of the god because of its ability to across the border of the rice fields. However my intention was not to carry on an anthropological research on the theme of rice divinity but rather to find words and images related with the sacred and historical meanings and give to them new shapes and connections.
The exhibition includes installation, video and traces of a workshop. It focuses on the “Ilori” as imagine that irradiates memories of the feeding time in its ritual meanings.
1 Ilori/Inari installation: textile drawing cm 218×110, textile masks on pink japanese paper, tatami with objects used during the performance The riso Rosa Blessing .
2 The fox and the jewels: textile assemblages, textile masks , traces of the workshop where people from Omachi and Nagano have builded the masks used in the performance..
3 The Riso Rosa Blessing performance in the Kamado Jinja shrine Omachi city 6 November 2016.
The creation never is something of new, but everything we transform from old things to new forms may be art. When I saw the objects and the places belonging to the history and the culture of this city, I tried to understand their anthropological sense and their connections with the topics of rice time and water. I decided however to play with this signs giving them a new perception rather that take their meaning for granted. The image of “irori” became a big vintage icon floating in the room , Otafuku is a pink goddes whose face is redesigned by the people who attended in the workshop, and Inari wears a kimon like a manga character. “Fox and the jewels” is the small, temporary world, where the borders of words and images can be crossed and shifted.
To this link on the Asahi AIR website you can find the tale of the various steps in this project.http://shinano-omachi.jp/asahi-air/artist-list/marina-gasparini/
To me art is a way to cross boundaries between many kind of knowledge. I mean: in the past the writer of a book about geography could have written a volume of anatomy, for example. And if you remember when Foucault start his “Order of the things” he recounts about the Borges novel “Aleph” where you can read that in chinese encyclopedia at the point: “animals” there was a mixed of many meanings; for example animals with two or four paws, animals in coupling, animals painted with a very thin brush etc. In the same way an exhibition of art can focus on different type of arguments, like space, the science, social instances, the rice, the time the water with a unique freedom of thought that is not allowed to other fields of knowledge. My exhibition was titled Fox and the Jewels but it should have been titled “My ignorance about Japan”. I used some stereotypes like the kimono, the masks of the theater, the Manga’s image of Inari, but not with the aim to catch the attention of people who don’t know the contemporary art language and give them what they can afford, but with the opposite goal. Inari its own is a multi-shaped divinity. She is a woman, a fox, and he is a man at the same time. As well as the divinity Art is a form of thought that is expanded in many directions and the work of the artis in residence are a testimony of this.
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more informations to this link