Moon : Tsuki wo koso…
Genbey Yamaguchi, the tenth generation owner of the famous Kyoto obi specialist, Kondaya, is a rare breed of man. Kondaya has remained a leader in its field for 280 years, and Yamaguchi believes that challenging tradition is the best way to protect it. He therefore employs the skills and old materials passed down to him through the generations in his work. For instance, one of the most splendid obi created by Kondaya is woven from peacock’s feathers. It is said that even skillful artisan is only capable of making one during their lifetime. Kondaya also has produced obi saches with gorgeous decoration of mother-of-pearl and precious stones. By incorporating many new, mostly unheard of methods and materials, Yamaguchi redefines the notion of what is possible in Japanese textile making. He strives to pass down these techniques to bring these proud traditions within Japanese culture into the future.
In this exhibition celebrating their 280th anniversary, Kondaya will collaborate with a renowned Italian artist, Laura de Santillana. Yamaguchi hopes that they will ‘ make sparks fly ‘ together. Two contradictory materials – glass that allows light to pass through it, and textiles that reflect that light – create a mysterious harmony together.
De Santillana admires and is deeply commited to Japanese culture. In particular, her tablet glass series demonstares the true depth of her appreciation of Japanese – style expression. She presents her Moon series, with gold and silver leaf decoration, and her Bamboo series, whch she created in the Czech Republic.
Kondaya is eager to use extremely precious antique metal foils which have been preserved by his business for many years, to produce new obi sashes.
The theme of this special collaboration exhibition is a poem bu Kenreimonin that was written in from HeianPeriod ( 794 – 1185 ) :
Many a time have I gazed at the moon, But never so poignant did it seem,
As amid tonight’s star-strewn skies
The exhibition will be filled with romance and fantasy, allowing the audience to return to the origins of viewing things.