By far one of the most inspiring parts of my trip was coming face to face with some stunning zen garden’s I came across in Kyoto. This is just one example of these fantastically designed structures inside one of the temple structures on the Philosopher’s Walk.
I am in awe of their form and meaning. They are very similar to what I have been doing, creating little snippets using materials that will not stay in the form forced upon them.
They resonate with me greatly because of the questions I’ve been asking of my work and examining the meanings I’m developing in this project.
I was fortunate enough to be able to stay at Studio Kura, Itoshima in Fukuoka. This was vastly different from Kagoshima, trading in the busy and active atmosphere for the rural surroundings of Studio Kura. The facilities there ere wonderful, providing some authentic Japanese living while I continued to explore the cultural elements of Japan, experiencing the amazing delicacies and my first onsen.
Although Fukuoka is seen as being safe in regards to volcanic activity I felt it was important to continue to produce experiments with my casting kit in this location. Japan has a huge proportion of the worlds active volcanoes as well as hosting dormant and deceased volcano’s as well. This area may not have active volcano’s for the moment but the volcanic material still lines the soils and surroundings. This would come from far off distances, far reaching volcanoes depositing its ash here or finding it siting within the soil from many years ago.
Same method used here in a different location amongst the farm land near by.
on a day out and about in Itoshima I came across this fantastic sight. These hillsides covered in these concrete nets. I really enjoy the strenuous elements involved, the rock face looking as though it is putting a lot of force and manipulating the net like form over it.
Compressed natural elements using a compression mould. This is the same method I used on Sakurajima.
Sakurajima near Kagoshima was my first stop in my research. One of the most active volcanoes in Japan, this giant mountain is a constant threat to the local population as it continuously erupts volcanic ash covering the city. During the past week I travelled around the Island of Sakurajima by foot and by bike, spending full days researching, gathering information and recording different elements. I was amazed at how active it was there. The activity of the Island seemed to mimic that of the volcano; constantly active, things constantly happen, people moving working rushing. I captured some movements in audio and video recordings while conducting my minor experiments on the Island.
First Sakurajima Film Experiment
Second Sakurajima Film Experiment
The first experiment shows the actions as they happened with my physical presence very evident in them, while the Second Experiment features the sound of the event over a recording of the finished object in situe. The audio recording reveals the sound of the ramming rod compressing the ash while the image shows a still solid object. This disconnection between the visual and the audio creates a different resolution. The overlying of the sound disconnects the making from the object and disrupts the timeline of its life. The Sound of the action continuously plays over the stationary form as if mirroring the quiet form of the volcano as it remains constantly active.
Closer to the summit the material appears a lot darker, sitting smoother and solid. A small chunk has fallen off. This image makes it feel bigger than it is, depicting its importance to me in my journey but as I constructed it, and filmed its creation you can see the huge trucks and other vehicles passing and reducing its magnitude to miniture proportions.