4th Echigo Tsumari Art Triennial
Oral Fibre resulted from a 3-month Asialink residency in rural Japan, and formed part of the 4th Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennial. The residency took place within a 170 year-old traditional farmhouse, purchased at the time by the Australian Embassy in Tokyo, to become known in the region as ‘Australia House’, and established as the Australian ‘pavilion’ for each triennial.
The Asialink residency enabled meaningful connections with local community members to feed into the development and production of new artwork that was intrinsically connected to the place and identity of the community, whilst contributing to an exhibition of over 300 international artists.
The installation incorporated diverse material components: Tasmanian leatherwood beeswax casts of all the ears of the local residents; digital video documentation of Koi from a local aquaculture farm; construction of internal architectural interventions within the interior of the farmhouse using traditional shikibuton fabrics.
The installation explored the weaving of an oral fibre that entwines the community, reflecting on a community being a body of people and the interpretation of a house as a body. The fabric being both the people and the buildings made to envelope them. The house reveals/reflects the way we engage with the world. The foundation/the cellar, where we constantly dig, scratching at our identity, our building blocks. The room, our present horizon, where we engage talk and listen, where we invite outside influences and interact. The loft, our head-space, reflecting our horizons of knowledge, the way we perceive our world, the place where we dream.
The installation reveals openings within the architecture of the room, framing opportunities which invite the viewer to consider the range of ways we inhabit our place.