Xu Bing, A Book From the Sky, 1987. Installation at Chazen Museum of Art, University of Wisconsin, Madison, 1991. Moveable-type prints and books.
Xu trained as a printmaker in Beijing. A Book From the Sky, with its invented Chinese woodblock characters, may be a stinging critique of the meaninglessness of contemporary political language.
Photography by Marcelo Marianna
Act Romegialli Architects built the ‘Green box’ as the renovation of a small disused garage, an accessory to a weekend house situated on the slopes of the Raethian Alps. A structure realized with lightweight metal galvanized profiles and steel wires wraps the existent volume and transforms it into a three-dimensional support for the climbing vegetation. It is composed mainly by deciduos vegetation. Inside the pavillion provides a room for the gardening tools, an area for cooking and a space for conviviality. Materials are left rough and simple; galvanized steel for the kitchen, larch planks for flooring and big sliding doors, windows in unpainted galvanized steel, simple pipes for the water supply. To us it seems to be the perfect little retreat.
Hiroshi Sugimoto - Appropriate Proportion: Go-Oh Shrine (2002)
“Go-Oh Shrine traces its origins back to the Muromachi (Ashikaga) period (1338-1573). In recent years, however, the structure had deteriorated considerably and was slated for reconstruction under the Naoshima House Project.
Called in as artist-designer, I avoided existing shrine typologies and tried to recreate an imaginary architecture more in keeping with ancient Japanese Shinto worship.
Prior to shinmyo-zukuri (the first Shinto architectural style formalized in the 7th century), animist worship is thought to have focused on sites in nature where some special quality or force was felt—ineffable ‘power places’—whether in giant trees or waterfalls or boulders.
The ancient Japanese conceived of their kami (deities) as manifesting themselves only when humans purified their ‘power places’ for them. Thus, my vision of Go-Oh Shrine started from the giant rock slab visited by the local kami.
The shrine comprises 3 main parts: the Worship Hall, the Main Sanctuary, and the Rock Chamber. The massive rock slab completely cuts off the Worship Hall and the Main Sanctuary from the Rock Chamber; only the ‘stairway of light’ joins the celestial and earthbound realms.
From the underground chamber, a concrete-walled passage leads to the mountainside. Visitors to the shrine first worship at the divine iwakura (stone seat) and shrine hall, then descend to the ‘ancient’ underground chamber via the concrete passage, lastly taking in a view of the sea through the portal to the present on the way out.”
Russian artist Anatoly Vyatkin installed a giant replica of a Cyrillic QWERTY keyboard made of 86 stone blocks, each weighing up to 1,000 pounds. The Keyboard monument (which in some circles also goes by the name “Claudia”) is a permanent outdoor sculpture located in Yekaterinburg, Russia, where it remains a prominent tourist attraction.
Sagaki Keita (b.1984, Japan)
The Great Wave off Kanagawa from the series 36 Views of Mt.Fuji 冨嶽三十六景 神奈川沖浪裏. Pen on CLASSICO･5, 26.5×38.5 cm (2012)
Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji: Shower Below the Summit 冨嶽三十六景 山下白雨. Pen on CLASSICO･5, 25.4×38.6 cm (2012)
The Fifty-Three station of the Tokaido/Night Snow at Kambara 東海道五拾三次之内 蒲原 夜之雪. Pen on kentpaper, 25.1×37.3 cm (2008)