WORKSHOP with Tamás Szvet as part as the
Akiyoshidai International Art Village Residency Program
Renaissa Nagato / Yamaguchi
prefecture / JAPAN

The workshop organized by the Akiyoshidai International Art Village, as part as the Artist in Residence program in 2016. Connected to the annual theme of AIAV “The Features of This Land” we created a light installation together with a group of participants.

The inspiration of the workshop was Junichiro Tanizaki’s essay: in praise of shadows (1977). The text discusses traditional Japanese aesthetics in contrast with change by using light and darkness as symbols.

The technique – I refer in the workshop - based on a mirror I have seen in Kyoto. The makyo magic mirror is an ancient art that can be traced back to (206 BC – 24 AD). The mirrors were made out of solid bronze. The front is a shiny polished surface and could be used as a mirror, while the back has a design cast in the bronze. When bright sunlight or other bright light reflects onto the mirror, the mirror seems to become transparent. If that light is reflected from the mirror towards a wall, the pattern on the back of the mirror is then projected onto the wall.

During the workshop we used simple mirrors. After drawing a negative image on the mirror surface we installed them in a dark room, and projected the positive picture into the space with a help of flash lights.For the drawings we used collected images of Akiyoshidai. Therefore the topic was the history of the region. In this case the shadows symbolize the past, the culture, and – by making it alive with light - we bring it to the present and the future.

2016 - AIAV Akiyoshidai International Art Village, Yamaguchi Prefecture / JP

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