At the end of the 2022 summer we invited Dutch artist Sigrid Calon to spend 24 hours in Fujiyoshida. Sigrid spent the time taking in the town’s history, aesthetics, current day atmosphere, colours, people, factories, alleyways, religious spots, tastes, local vegetation and much more. It was only a glimpse into the fabric of the town but one that filled Calon with endless visual references and ideas.
The observations and inspirations she gathered served as the base for the site specific installation we worked on for Fuji Textile Week 2022.
The installation, in line with Calon’s ongoing work, is driven by elements and thoughts found within a local temple and textile factories, and were processed into new designs that appear in the different elements of this installation. It brings together notions of repetitive actions, the geometry of weaving, sublimity, festivity and reflection, all of which are not only fundamental to the history that built this city and its daily life, but also to this very location, in a myriad of different ways and meanings.
Further enhancing these elements is her signature playful and modernistic fingerprint, and iconic colour scheme and palette.
The main site we chose for the installation is within and around the Fukugenji (福源寺) located along the Iriyama river. This is one of many sources of flowing water in the town, an essential component of the historic development of the local textile industry. When visiting the temple for the first time we were each captivated by different elements that later appeared as fragments in the creative process. Sigrid was especially overwhelmed by the large amount of shiny gold elements and ornaments around the altar.
The installation begins at the old main gate of the temple which has been on site for hundreds of years mediating between the temple, the city and its citizens. It leads the visitors and continues to unfold throughout the inner grounds of the temple, ending in a single visitor's seat within the main prayer hall.
Visitors arriving in the old centre of Fujiyoshida town will come across three flags designed by Sigrid, flying high above the rooftop of the old bank with a backdrop of the iconic Mount Fuji. This is an invitation to explore her site specific installation as well as all the other participating exhibitions of the 2022 Fuji Textile Week.
Over the years Sigrid’s self-published books have been widely celebrated around the world. In line with this practice, a limited edition book that will be released during the time of the event is yet another piece of this special installation.
The new textiles that appear throughout the installation were designed by Sigrid in her Netherlands studio, then crafted and woven in collaboration with the TextileLab at the Textile museum in Tilburg.
This site specific installation was made possible due to the generous support of the Netherlands embassy in Tokyo.
We wish to the thank the Fukugenji (福源寺) for their incredible hospitality and flexibility.
Guest Curator : Arieh Rosen | Subsidy : Netherlands embassy in Tokyo