Koinobori Now! The Franco-Japanese Trend that’s in the Air

04.07.2018

"Koinobori Now! Installation by Reiko Sudo, Adrien Gardère and Seiichi Saito" The National Art Center, Tokyo, 2018 Photo: Ken KATO

Spring-like and more colourful than cherry-tree flowers, koinobori dot the Japanese landscape. But what exactly are koinobori? They are in fact wind socks that can be attached to bamboo sticks, created traditionally in celebration of national Children’s Day. According to Chinese legend, the carps that would swim up the Yellow River against the current would finish their journey by flying, transforming into dragons as they went. They thereby symbolise tenacity and elevation.

Taking inspiration from this celebration, textile designer Reiko Sudo created in collaboration with French designer Adrien Gardère, a unique installation of over 300 contemporary koinobori swimming inside the gallery the biggest exhibition gallery of the National Art Center, Tokyo, measuring 2000 mby 8 m high.

To realise this massive work, Sudo joined forces with Seiichi Saito, a noted member of Rhizomatiks, who brought dynamic movement to the installation by making these swimming carps come alive in a meditative experience.

Sudo, Gardère and Saito are three passionate creators whose work is engaged and meticulous, questioning the limits of their art and paying homage here to perseverance. Both an invitation to refuge in reverie and an opportunity to fly high.

"Koinobori Now! Installation by Reiko Sudo, Adrien Gardère and Seiichi Saito" The National Art Center, Tokyo, 2018 Photo: Ken KATO

Installation view: "Koinobori Now! Installation by Reiko Sudo, Adrien Gardère and Seiichi Saito" The National Art Center, Tokyo, 2018 Photo: Ken KATO

"Koinobori Now! Installation by Reiko Sudo, Adrien Gardère and Seiichi Saito" The National Art Center, Tokyo, 2018 Photo: Ken KATO

"Koinobori Now! Installation by Reiko Sudo, Adrien Gardère and Seiichi Saito" The National Art Center, Tokyo, 2018 Photo: Ken KATO

"Koinobori Now! Installation by Reiko Sudo, Adrien Gardère and Seiichi Saito" The National Art Center, Tokyo, 2018 Photo: Ken KATO

"Koinobori Now! Installation by Reiko Sudo, Adrien Gardère and Seiichi Saito" The National Art Center, Tokyo, 2018 Photo: Ken KATO

Koinobori Now! Installation by Reiko Sudo, Adrien Gardère and Seiichi Saito

Wednesday 11 April – Monday 28 May

The National Art Center, Tokyo

7-22-2 Roppongi, Minato-ku Tokyo

03-5777-8600 (Hello Dial)

Opening hours: 10am-6pm

Closed: Tuesday (except for May 1st)

Admission: Free

http://www.nact.jp/english/exhibitions/2018/koinoborinow2018/