29.03.2021 #art

Mariko Mori

VISION GATE – “Kojiki – Amenomanai”

There is a uniqueness to Japanese culture, especially the Edo period.

At a time when travelling and discovering new cultures has become difficult, the Agency for Cultural Affairs, Government of Japan, has launched an initiative to promote the uniqueness and multi-dimensional appeal of the Japanese culture. Called CULTURE GATE to JAPAN, the project consists in a series of exhibitions held at seven airports across the country. The Tokyo International Haneda Airport and the Narita International Airport are both hosting VISION GATE as part of the initiative: an exhibition of eight groups of Japanese artists from all generations curated by MoMA Senior Curator of Architecture & Design Paola Antonelli. While Yuri Suzuki and Miyu Hosoi present the sound installation « Crowd Cloud », six groups of artists present their vision of Japanese tradition and future through a series of videos displayed in the airport’s arrival concourse and various places. acky bright, Jun Inoue, Mariko Mori, Monika Mogi, PARTY, and Sachiko Kodama all give their own interpretation of their country’s unique culture for people to experience just as they get off the plane…


What does the idea of ‘vision’ evoke to you as an artist?

As an artist, the vision is always the starting point and, in this case, it guided me through the process of making this piece. However, that vision must be the one I can trust, as so many visions could come to my mind but are not always the ones I want to follow. It has to be the one I received but not imagined.

How much is your work influenced by your Japanese roots, and the tension between past and present, tradition and innovation in Japanese culture?

Although I have been communicating to an international audience through my work, a majority of it is based on the Eastern philosophies, Japanese history and culture as I am interested in researching the origins of a particular culture.

Can you tell us about your work presented for ‘VISION GATE’ and displaying it in an airport as opposed to an art gallery?

The context of the airport interests me as the viewers would be travelers who are coming to Japan with a possible preconception of Orientalism and exoticism, which is not always the case with an audience in an art gallery. In a way, there is a uniqueness to Japanese culture, especially the Edo period. Over 200 years, the nation was isolated from the outside, which contributed in developing a one-of-a-kind culture because there was no influence by another country. I am honored to present my work based on Kojiki – the oldest record of creation myth in Japan – right at the entrance of the airport, as the very first sight of the country visitors will experience.

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