HAPPENINGText: Shinichi Ishikawa

Winter has finally come to Hokkaido. I was born in here and have been living here for a long time by now, honestly the coldness of winter and the snow sometimes get me down, but when I look around the scenery of snowing in silence, and a beautiful white morning with non-removed snow, I wonder if I came to an another planet or somewhere.

Hokkaido Museum of Modern Art is one of the famous museums in Sapporo. It is located close to the center, and its size is comparatively big. It’s also very easy to get there if you take subway. I think this is the first place to take a look arts for people who live in Sapporo when we think about art. This year a special project has been held because of its 30 years anniversary.

Born in Hokkaido

The special exhibition “Born in HOKKAIDO” is an exhibition project by 16 artists who were born in Hokkaido. Impressive exhibition which introduced us various modern arts, such as flat works, three dimensional works, and visual works. A new approach, artists and primary school students collaborated at the exhibition. They separated 16 artists into 4 spaces and keywords: “Harvest of feeling”, “Harvest of imagination”, “Harvest of conversation” and for the last one, ” Ripe future” to exhibit works of children.

Born in Hokkaido
Yasuharu Mounai

I would like to take you a guide to appreciate modern art while I introduce part of exhibition works. Those modern art fans who live in Sapporo couldn’t miss this exhibition, but I strongly recommend to go to museums people who don’t usually go to museums. Some people might think that modern art is “difficult”. I wouldn’t say it’s wrong, but its difficultness which leads to joy is one of fascinations, and I don’t think their level of difficulty are different.

Born in Hokkaido
Shinsuke Asaji

How to enjoy modern art is, however the work is flat or three dimensional or visual, just accept itself with no thoughts. Look closely or even from far, I would like you to look at details after looking at whole work. Then you can imagine a lot of things from the work, just relax and enjoy art. After that, how about think about why the artist, who the same human being as you, tried out the expression and how they feel about it. That is the best part of art, I guess. If you have someone to go to museum with, exchanging opinions would be a good idea, too. Art is not to enjoy the answer or conclusion, it is to enjoy your interpretation.

Born in Hokkaido
Kinpro (Chisato Shinya)

These works bring us something like Hokkaido-ness because of the artists who were born in Hokkaido. We could probably find something in common or a keyword. This could be a bit too exaggerated story, but some hints which how Hokkaido should go its way includes our dairy life or economy are hidden in Hokkaido arts. Modern art is an mirror that reflects present, and I think some element of Hokkaido land are in the works by artists who brought up in Hokkaido.

This exhibition opens until January 2008. This is a long term exhibition so you can have a look in winter holiday or holidays around new years. Also in a permanent exhibition “Collection story 1977-2007 Hokkaido Art vol. 3”, we can see great historical works mainly from their collection during 250 years. You must be able to experience a big wave of Hokkaido art if you have a look both of them.

Artists: Mika Aoki, Shinsuke Asaji, Mituhiro Ikeda, Tamami Kaizawa, Kinpro (Chisato Shinya), Yasuharu Mounai, Ryouko Suzuki, Atsushi Suwa, Kiyoshi Takahashi, Satoshi Hata, Hiroyuki Nogami, Tsubasa Ban, Ruka Hukui, Masayoshi Masago, Kano Matsunaga, Gakushi Morimoto

Born in HOKKAIDO: People and art on the ground
Date: November 1st, 2007 – January 24th, 2008
Open: 9:30 – 17:00 (Closed on Monday)
Place: Hokkaido Museum of Modern Art
Address: North 1 West 17, Chuo-ku, Sapporo
Tel: +81 (0)11 644 6881

Text: Shinichi Ishikawa
Translation: Junko Isogawa
Photos: Shinichi Ishikawa

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