International Symposium, “The Possibilities for Art in Disasters”

On Mar. 4 (Fri), as we approach the day 5 years after the Great East Japan Earthquake, an international symposium organized by the CR Project, “The Possibilities for Art in Disasters”, was held at the International House of Japan (Roppongi, Tokyo). Many people including those who gave much support to the activities of CR came, totaling over 100 visitors.
In the first part, those on the stage introduced their actual artistic practices in the state of a disaster from their respective points of view. In the second part, a discussion was conducted on the possibilities for the role of art in disasters. A heated discussion was carried out covering a wide range of subjects including the topic of what should be the role of art museums and gallery spaces from the perspective of disaster and art, about the on-going exhibition in an area where residence is restricted due to the nuclear power plant accident. Another theme was in reference to the compatibility of the results of CR’s activities carried out in the disaster-stricken areas and the educational effect as a university.
I would like to thank everyone who came.


Kesen-numa Reconstruction Support: A design that embraces the community

On Aug. 30, Seiryuji Temple’s Jizoson (Guardian Deity of Children) Festival was held. Forty traditional Japanese lanterns made of driftwood were created for the festival. Many buildings in Kozumi Beach in Kesen-numa city are still left as they were when the earthquake struck the area. The amount of driftwood that was swept onto the shore by the lapping waves relates the passage of time. The students put together the driftwood and LED lights in their own imaginative ways. They started to chat with the local people as they worked in front of the shops in the shopping center. They tried to keep the structures simple and the cost low, so that the local children and residents could also create them in their own inspirational styles. The lanterns were arranged in a row on the street that had submerged. They were lanterns of requiem inviting the people to the festival. Since some people who had seen the lanterns asked if they could have the lanterns, we decided to let them take them home. After the festival, people took home their favorite lantern and by the end, there were none left. The next day, we saw one being used as a window display. It is a shop which first floor had submerged to the ceiling. (Nonaka)