Tokyo, Japan *1980
"Like a flowing river, water flows continuously." Life of a human being is the same. Nothing remains as it is.I embody it.
Sakuho Ito creates this unique “Sabi Washi” (rust paper) from the raw materials that are carefully selected and combined by herself. These materials she uses express Japanese belief on life and death, praise for aging, Japanese unique view of nature that they accept aging and imperfection as beauty, and also the appreciation toward rustic simplicity, impermanence, and imperfection which is also familiar to Japanese tea ceremony. While the sustainability is placed as the most important thing in many cases nowadays, she is asking the question why we are continuously making the products that are not biodegradable and harmful to the earth. The main motif of her creation is to have the “tranquility” that she experienced in her childhood. The reason why she is attracted to the rusting and aging things is related to the events she played in the mountains when she was a child. There are four seasons in Japan, so in autumn the leaves turn red, wither, and fall to the ground. She was very excited about the phenomenon that the leaves were gradually broken down into the soil. The sense of this exhilaration became her motivation. She figured out that these events are real and the truth to the world. Of course, she was too young to express the feeling of this excitement in words at that time. But still, that feeling has remained and has led to her present artwork. In recent years the viewpoint of sustainability is inevitable in many situations all over the world. And how we interact and coexist with humans and non-humans are major issues. Even though we, human beings, have continued to produce plastics which are non- degradable materials, things that actually “rust”, “ decay”, “get old” and, “return to the soil” should not be denied but be considered rather beautiful. These aging processes show the “tranquility” and represent the “principle of equality of living things”. She wants to know why all the organisms are designed to age in their DNA, and also she is seeking the answer for the existence of human beings.
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