July 2005アーカイブ

Attempted Bombing

I was talking to Wenda about the news of the terror warnings to Europe by the al-Qeada terrorist network.
As the Netherlands is one of the countries listed as those with increasing possibilities of terrorist attacks, I said to her 'I am rather worried. They say there is a possibility of terrorist attacks in the Netherlands.' Then she said, 'Well, there was an attempted bombing here before; but the reason why it failed was because the terrorists started to quarrel, and they did not get so far as to attempt explosion.'
I kind of liked this episode. They forgot their mission as they started to argue... I think it is nice as it is... very human.
I understand that each person has his or her sense of justice. But it is when they get too much into the mission or into the role, and when they dismiss their human part that things start to go wrong. The same thing can be applied to when we make paintings.
I was glad to know that the terrorist's human part stopped him from identifying himself too much with the role, and as a result prevented the bombing.

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is known for its rather relaxed passport control among the airports in Europe. Because of that, last few years, Amsterdam quickly turned into a safe house for the terrorist groups. As this came to be realized as an issue, restrictions for obtaining resident visa was tightened; but still entry to the country is very easy.

Special Skills

Many people around me have special skills.
Pauline, a photographer, is also a juggler.
At a party, she often performs juggling with things like empty beer bottles.
I think juggling is very Pauline-ish skill. She is not only athletic, but also compatible with the world around her - her works too reveal that quality.
Raj, the gallerist, is a figure skater. He used to be a professional. A gallerist who can sing (?) and skate - how cool!
When I see him skating (very cool), it makes me think that his awareness about 'presenting' things to others and his 'show spirit' might have come from his experience as a figure skater.
At the meeting, he always shows us the videos of figure skating. He is funny. He always asks 'Would you like to see more (of course you do!)' - and we ended up watching at least 20 performances. Maurice gets angry - 'Do your work!'
There are quite a few DJs: Arend, a technician at the paint workshop, Dick who works at the canteen, and some artists... we never run out of DJs at the party.
My skill? Maybe... to pick up interesting objects on streets?


Too Nice?

Today, there were studio visits by some companies; they would see whether they are interested in sponsoring us or not. They would visit my studio at 11 o'clock.
I was taking it easy, and relaxing at home as usual as I did not need to rush to the studio. After taking shower, my flatmate Ryan (an American and a vegan) came into my room asking 'Can I borrow your hair-dryer?' This is unusual.
I said 'Sure... but isn't it rather unusual?' Then he said 'I have to dress well as the companies are coming to visit my studio.'
Humph. I was thinking whether I should take it more seriously, when he appeared again asking 'How do I look? Too nice? Too nice?' Ryan was wearing a formal trousers and contact lenses instead of glasses (why?) and his hair was handsomely set. It was funny!
When he asked me 'Too nice?' I thought he was joking, but I just told him 'Brilliant.'
When I told this to Wenda at night, she said 'Really? When I saw him at around lunch time, his hair looked as though it had exploded.'
What happened to you, Ryan?! But I had fun... twice.


Kin-niku Man: The Ultimate Muscle

If you visit museums in Europe, you will always come across with lost of icons. Whenever I take pleasure in watching them, I was reminded of Kin-niku Man: The Ultimate Muscle.
This is not at all something strange for me, because Kin-niku Man for me is an icon of human body.
I feel I must have a look at Kin-niku Man again when I go back to Japan the next time.
By the way, my ideal manga (story-wise) is Dokaben, a story about baseball players.

Note: icon is a painting or statue of God and a holy person, created for the purpose of worship in the Christian church. After the Renaissance, icon became a site for the experimentation of the presentation of human bodies. I think.

Bonus: Tomoko's Useful phrases for artists.
When icons make you want to read Kin-niku Man:
'It makes me feel want to read comics which was named KIN-NIKU MAN: The Ultimate Muscle'

Terrorists' Attacks

I heard the news of the suicide bombers in London while I was doing some drawing in my studio today. I called my friend in London to see if she was OK. She said that the city was alarmed: all the transportation networks were blocked; and entry to central area was restricted. In the midst of this, however, her boyfriend went out -- 'I've a hung-over. I am going for swim.' So did her flatmates - 'I've got a holiday. I am going to Paris.' (Eurostar was operating, and they did get to Paris.) Wow. Londoners are tough.


Packing 2

I did not expect to work so soon on what I said 'curious' yesterday - putting the painting back together.
One of the three paintings I pulled apart yesterday was still being displayed in the exhibition. Indeed, I wondered for a moment if it was really OK, as it even had a green mark on it. But I rolled it anyway.
It was just as I have thought. Maurice called me last night from Austria, where they are on business, and said 'Leave it in Amsterdam!!! The collectors may come again later to have a look.' ... oh no, really? I have already rolled it. I thought I talked about this and double checked with him... but it seems that I misunderstood.
In any case, the painting had to be put back together before the opening time of the gallery today. I asked Jesse to open the gallery for me early in the morning, and put the paining back together. Of course not just by myself. Thanks for the help, everyone.
Putting the painting back again was rather a systematic process.

Bonus: Tomoko's Useful phrases for artists.
When you need help for building the painting:
'I have to build the painting. Give me your hand!'

PS. Thanks to the effort, this painting was sold. How lucky I am!

Notes: A red sticker is put on to the work which is sold, and a green one to which a collector showed a particular interest. They are likely to be back later to have a look at the work again.



I packed my paintings which need to be shipped to LA.
As my paintings are large, I usually cut the frame into two and fold the paintings for transport. (I protect the surface with special care... but I skip the details here). But as the stretchers that I use here is not fit for such a rough procedure, I tried for the first time to take the canvas off from the stretcher, and to roll the canvas... I was a bit nervous.
As I have three large paintings to ship -- two in the gallery and another one in my studio, I decided to start with the one in the studio.
Thanks to the help of Kick from the shipping company, rolling the painting and pulling the stretcher apart was easier than I thought. What worries me is the process of putting it back together (it is my handmade stretcher)... although I am curious about that too.
We had to carry one rolled painting with us to our next destination, the gallery. It was a bit difficult. Kick came with his car, which was not a van. So, inside the car, we put the roll diagonally across and I supported one end (as you carry mikoshi - the portable shrine) to protect it.
It was an uncomfortable position - quite tiring.
(To be continued tomorrow...)


Santa Claus

Last Saturday, I visited Noord Markt in Jordan, which is located toward the west from Amsterdam Central Station.
There is an organic market every Saturday; but my purpose was to go to the second-hand book stands on the margin of it, as I was looking for a book about Santa Claus.
Probably because it is out of season, I could not find any.
Well, maybe next time... I was about to leave when, among the old postcards (most of them are used ones), I found a postcard with strange creatures wearing a red hat.
What are these strange creatures?
The weasel-like animals, each wearing, super-noticeable red pixie hat, are looking towards us from a bush in the wood (or from the surface of the water?). In spite of this strangely funny setting, they look very serious.
Their red hats caught my attention as I was looking for Santa Claus. But this unexpected gap between what I was looking for and what I found made me laugh. Is everything OK in the world of 'Märchen' - the world of the fairy tale?
But this world can only exist within this white frame (can you see it?).



このページには、July 2005に書かれたブログ記事が新しい順に公開されています。

前のアーカイブはJune 2005です。

次のアーカイブはAugust 2005です。