MOERENUMA PARK

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“Sapporo’s awesome. There’s Isamu Noguchi </A's object at Ohdori Park, Moerenuma Park, and Sapporo Art Park. There are not many places like this, which has such large-scale art facilities close to the center of the city.” People from outside of Hokkaido often said so. It may be less flashy thing for local people how special it is. Moerenuma Park is designed by Isamu Noguchi, the world famous sculptor, based on his master plan. The concept is that the park itself is one of the sculptures. It is also from “Toroidal-green belt plan”, which intends to cover center of Sapporo with parks and greens. Moerenuma Park was completed in all aspects this year. So, both the park and Sapporo Art Park hold various events and big exhibition. Now we can go back to see the famous slide in Odori Park designed by him, which called “Black Slide Mantra.”


Odori park is a big park dividing Sapporo into south and north. “Sapporo snow festival” is also taken place here. “Black Slide Mantra” , the famous slide objet by Isamu Noguchi can be seen at 8th part of the park. He must imagine how vivid the black is in snow. It has strong impression in the green turf. Looked avant-garde but also making us feel comfortable, it is loved by children to play with.

For the 15th anniversary of Sapporo Art Park they have “Isamu Noguchi exhibition, Energy started from 0”. It is second time for this museum to have his exhibition. Last time it focused on “Spirit of harmony”. On the other hand, it pays attention to an environmental sculpture and space modeling such as park and playground. They exhibit about 45 of his works. Almost half of them are from Isamu Noguchi foundation in NY and also can be seen for the first time in Japan. “Energy Void” which is huge stone sculpture, 3.6 high 17 ton weigh, is high lighted in arranged on the surface of the pond in front of the entrance. As it is same black objet as “Black Slide Mantra” in Ohdori Park, you can feel same “Harmony” and kind of mysterious comfortableness. That may be why Isamu Noguchi has such world wide reputation.

Entering exhibition site, you can see a model of entire Moerenuma Park. Seeing the overview, it can be clear the meaning he said that this park itself is one of his sculpture. Each pavilion is attractive, beautifully arranged and has its individuality. Again you can see his strong concern to public facilities, through all the works supposed to seen shared places like parks. I strongly recommend to see another aspect of Isamu Noguchi, different from works based on spirit of harmony. This exhibition has been held till 28th of August. It could be good opportunity for you to think about “public place=park”.

Well. I went to Moerenuma Park on the weekend. It was sunny day so many people enjoyed their holiday there. It is also because they have big exhibition and film workshops just after grand open. I always think that the glass pyramid in the marsh looks one of the scene of SF movie, fresh otherwise. Now the maximum eye-catcher of the grand open must be “Sea fountain” which completed recently. You can not see the splash all the time but 4 times a day, they have about 40 minutes show as one program. It makes fantastic atmosphere by lighted up at night time show.

I saw the show started at 13 o’clock, holiday. When I was sitting apart from fountain surrounded by trees to have lunch, I could see huge water column to stand with big sounds. Rushing with my camera through trees to in front of “See fountain” with loads of people in front, the water was still high up. It is so enormous that looks difficult to put them all in the flame of the camera. During choosing shooting spot, the water column has been gradually becoming small. Seeing the changes by wind You never get bored. It is like the flame of campfire.

The fountain has a double structure, the jet part of the center and the big outline following it. First water filled only around the jet. It flowed to another big circle through the program. Water runs to outside in a constant rhythm like the beach. This spectacle has been converted from dynamic one, like splashing water column to static one. That makes me feel it may be the story of the sea from birth to completion.

Every art lover wherever to live, inside or outside of Sapporo, are invited to see “Black Slide Mantra” in Ohdori Park, Sapporo Art Park, and Moerenuma Park. Moreover, I am glad if you like to see art event called “MO’ Element” held in Moerenuma Park in September. It is kind of personal though I am one of execution committee.

Isamu Noguchi / Moerenuma Park
Grand open: 25th Jun, 2005
Address: 599-1 Okadama Higashi-Ku, Sapporo, Japan
Tel: +81-11-790-1231
http://www.sapporo-park.or.jp/moere/

The 15th anniversary of Sapporo Art Park
Isamu Noguchi Exhibition, Energy started from 0″

Date: 2nd July – 28th August, 2005
Place: Sapporo Art Park
Address: 2-75 Minami-ku, Sapporo, Japan
Tel: +81-11-591-0090
http://www.artpark.or.jp

Text and Photos: Shinichi Ishikawa from Numero Deux
Translation: Sayaka Hirakawa

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