Hojo Village News - vol.3

TSUMARI DIARYPosted : August 22, 2018

The buzzing energy of the weekend
T373 "Tracing Water"
Sue Pedley + Kazuya Iwaki + Tokyo Denki University Iwaki Laboratory
T357 "A Sheep’s Hair Salon"
Ishi Okafuji

First thing in the morning of the first day of the weekend, KINARE is bustling with people.
There seems to be an excited atmosphere, where guests are thinking: "it's another day!"


"Good morning!" An "omotenashi" staff member, wearing a mint-green T-shirt. These local volunteers mill around the museum handing out floor guides and explain the exhibition to visitors as well as watch over the different installations. Everyone has a warm, smiling face.

During the festival period, weekends are packed with numerous events. Many of the artworks that are a part of the Hojo village also open as a shop (of course, you can enjoy these on weekdays as well).

First let's start with T373 "Tracing Water" (by Sue Pedley + Kazuya Iwaki + Tokyo Denki University Iwaki Laboratory). I encounter Mr. Iwaki who is manning a small vegetable stand.

"It's much more interesting to display vegetables that are a little bit bent, rather than perfectly straight!" he says, but most of the vegetables that are on display are, ironically, very beautifully shaped and look quite delicious. Sponge gourds, eggplants, bitter gourds, cucumbers. There's also some rice on display brought over from a nearby stall. These vegetables are sourced from the Aramachi Shinden village from the Kawanishi area. This Hojo installation, which is a part of the artwork on display at Aramachi Shinden (K092) is a piece commemorating the village's consistent struggle with the supply of water. The local community producing agriculture while struggling with the flow of water. The vegetable display stand is the commemorate this as well, gratitude to the earth for producing these vegetables in response to the hard work of the people.

※ At Aramachi Shinden of Kawanishi, there is a canteen that opens on the weekends using these locally-produced vegetables. Please consider visiting if you are in the area.

Next, to get a haircut, we head towards the artwork that is stationed right near the entrance hall of KINARE. T357 "A Sheep’s Hair Salon" by Ishi Okafuji Can you believe it, a hair salon has transformed into a work of art. Today's salon in charge is boy Tokyo. The hairdresser in charge gives me a cute illustration of the final cut afterwards.

The exterior of this salon is indeed extremely unique.
I wonder what the fluffy white exterior is actually made of?

The answer is: sheep's wool. The warm light it provides for the interior space is perfect for your hair-cut appointment. You can easily have hushed, secret conversations with your hairdresser in this space.

According to a visitor who's had experience living in Australia, looking at this artwork really evoked strong images of raw sheep's wool. She was extremely impressed with how beautifully white this freshly-sheered sheep's wool had become. Indeed if you think about the fact that this wool was actually part of a sheep at one point, you can really imagine how much work it took for it to transform into the artwork that sits in front of you. Entering the space and getting your fringe cut is part of this artwork; getting a massage is part of this artwork. The interesting thing about art is how we all appreciate the same artwork in such different ways.

※T357 A Sheep's Hair Salon
Hair salons:
boy tokyo (Tokyo)
Hair Salon Silhouette (Tokamachi)
ameria (Nagaoka)
≫Schedule (Japanese only)

Staff Yoshie Miwa

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Staff member of the Echigo-Tsumari Art Field.

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