Nishiko: Repairing Earthquake Project
18 November 2018 – 27 January 2019
Opening: Saturday 17 November, 17 hrs by
Minister Yoshiko Ina Kijima of the Embassy of Japan in The Hague (vice ambassador)
Location: Hogewal 1-9, The Hague
Open: Wednesday-Sunday, 12-17 hrs
Stroom Den Haag presents an exhibition of the Repairing Earthquake Project
, the magnum opus of the Hague-based artist Nishiko
(Kagoshima, Japan, 1981). After the earthquake and the subsequent tsunami in March 2011, Nishiko visited the Tohoku district in Japan, searching for remaining objects and collecting eyewitness accounts that enable us to experience the aftermath of the disaster first hand. During the project (2011-2018) she repairs and reconstructs the battered objects with great care and tenderness. Their scars are visual reminders of the historical events. “In my point of view, extreme care and dedication generate a potential for healing”
, Nishiko states. The repaired objects are further granted a second life, as the artist has them adopted by foster parents. The exhibition at Stroom presents the Repairing Earthquake Project
for the first time in its entirety.
In 2018 two new components form the culmination of the project. The completion is urged on by the pressure of time. The artist noted that in Japan, the reconstruction of tsunami-struck areas takes place at such a fast pace that it becomes increasingly difficult to find traces of the disaster outside the confined, highly radio-active areas. Earlier this year, Nishiko moved into a temporary studio in the coastal district of Tofino, Canada, to collect remnants that still wash ashore at the other side of the Pacific Ocean, seven years after the tsunami. More recently, the artist returned to the afflicted area in Japan. Many years after the event, survivors of the disaster still try to get compensation for the personal belongings they have lost. They consider these objects an integral part of their life and are still trying to get these objects returned to them. In response to these reports, Nishiko decided to render the objects which the survivors miss most as drawings, and to donate them subsequently.
The exhibition at Stroom not only aims to present the impressive Repairing Earthquake Project to a wider audience. Nishiko’s project also enables us to experience a human tragedy. Simultaneously the project bears witness to an ecological crisis. The fact that the sea level is rising dramatically due to man-made climate change, as well as the presence of plastic garbage patches in the Pacific Ocean, gives the project even more urgency. The Repairing Earthquake Projectnot only dwells on the earthquake and tsunami in Japan in 2011, it also reflects upon our common future.