Hidemi Nishida’s Installations Question Our Vision of the World

The artist takes over spaces and creates abstract works like 'Fragile Chairs' that question our history and perceptions.


WordsLou Tsatsas

© Hidemi Nishida

‘My works are always fragile. They represent the flaws in the world, and I hope that the viewer manages to see another landscape through these flaws’, explains Hidemi Nishida. A truly surrealist installation, Fragile Chairs plays with our perception of the real. How did these chairs get there? Who do they belong to? Here, the artist has created a most enigmatic work.

Hidemi Nishida was born in Otaru, on the island of Hokkaido, in 1986. After studying architecture, he realised that he preferred creating more primitive, minimalist structures as opposed to urban projects. ‘I therefore started to produce more experimental designs that alluded to but weren’t really architecture. At that same moment, I discovered The Poetics of Space, a book written by French philosopher Gaston Bachelard, which had a significant influence on me. I think it marked my arrival in the art world’, he continues.


A space built on contrasts

Fragile Chairs came into being at Lake Poroto in Hokkaido, a place with a unique history. ‘The Ainu, the native people who inhabited the island, used to occupy this space. Now, a museum dedicated to their history has been built there, and the area has become an important research base devoted to the Ainu culture’, explains the artist, who sees this place as an important crossroads between human societies. It’s a space built on contrasts, where the constant evolution of our world clashes with the timeless nature of the wild landscape.

‘By placing these chairs in the water, where no one can reach them, I am raising an important question: to whom do they really belong?’, adds Hidemi Nishida. By playing with the notions of appropriation and belonging, the artist invites the invisible into our environment, in an invitation to constantly compare the multiple perceptions of one same universe. The artist then continues this metaphysical reflection in works that question ‘the relationship between science, history, and the evolution of our vision of the world.’


Fragile Chairs (2017) by Hidemi Nishida can be viewed on his website.

© Hidemi Nishida

© Hidemi Nishida

© Hidemi Nishida