Posted : February 26, 2017
”It hasn’t been snowed much this winter” - people whom I hadn’t met for long time appeared to be somewhat sad.
Their memory of Echigo-Tsumari in winter must be with deep snowfall even it was a challenging winter.
Saturday 25 February - Sunday 12 March 2017
Artworks which only stand here for sixteen days may well be fleeting but memorable story. Participants in the snow trail will be guided by local people who had been living in this place long known for heavy snowfall. I wonder if you could imagine artworks you will encounter at last after walking through the deep snow seem as if they are alive in the snow, appealing to your five senses.
■”Hidden Village” by Maaria Wirkkala
At the beginning of the TRAIL, you may well be struggling with snow-shoes, focusing all the attention to every step you take. All of sudden you see the silhouetted of houses which stood on the snowfield, responding to the topography of terraced rice field. They look different depending on where you will see them and you feel as if you have discover a hidden village and the ladders shone as of they are reaching out to the sky.
■"Mori no hibi" by Kyota Takahashi
As you walk into thick and verdant forests in the snow following fain light shine through trees, you encounter countless windows with lamplights. Light calmly blinks as if they breeze reminding you of life that exist here.
■"Waiting for the spring" by Lin Shuen Long
Lin Shuen Long, his students from Taiwan and local volunteers, Matsudai Kakashitai spent about two weeks to complete the artwork. Spirit wearing sedge hats displayed along the narrow lane leading up to a temple change their appearance as it gets deep in the mountain which make you feel as if you are going back and forth in between this world and the other world. Sprits bearing seed of daffodil as if they are longing for the spring.
■"Yuki no shikai 2017 (snow vision 2017)" by Tadashi Maeyama
You will see white bamboo sticks tracing a square on the snowfield over the rice field as you walk along the river. Shades of colours gradually change on each side increase the background landscape with snow.
■"Yuki wo kiku (listen to the snow)" by Keiko Honma
The artwork looks as if snow falling from the sky make note on the score. They turn into icicles or melt into water as if they are changing tones. You are invited to compose new set of melody by adding snow on the score.
■"Tensegrity-6 (Snow Flower) " by Michio Horikawa・The 6th Sledge Festival
The long colourful sticks are not touching each other but striking balance and tension - a dynamic artwork by Michio Horikawa who has been working on snow art project for the past several years welcomes participants in the trail at the starting point. People are invited to join the 6th Sledge Festival on Saturday 4 and Sunday 5 March 2017 organised by the artist and local volunteers.
Approximately one hour SNOWART TRAIL was guided by a local guide who didn’t seem to have anything to do with art. However, he is the true local with wisdoms of and confidence in living in the snow country. The stories about unique experiences, life style and challenges he told us as we walked thorough deep snow synchronised with ambitions of artists and I felt like I was able to make a small step into the land of the snow country where these locals have been built their lives on for generations.
Echigo-Tsumari Art Field staff member Okamura
Click ≫here for booking the SNOWART TRAIL.