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Deleting them with the sky In Ishinomaki 

Deleting them with the sky In Ishinomaki  (2017 )

On March 2011,3000 lives became victims of the earthquake and great tsunami in Ishinomaki City. 7 years have passed, and we have posed this question to people living in Ishinomaki:’Are there anything you want to delete?’

We have interviewed the people of Ishinomaki what they wanted to delete from this place where everything had been washed away,but still there were things that remained, or things that came into being because of this,  and went to delete what emerged together with them.

This project was conducted through using an iPhone and mirror.By using the bugs of the iPhone camera, we transform what we want to delete into the sky.

Under the blue sky, we would be confronting the subject to be deleted.






Deleting them with the Sky in Ishinomaki is an installation and video work that centers around the expression of individual emotions that were suppressed following the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake disaster through inquiries into <deleting> and <the deleted>. The work was created in Ishinomaki city, Miyagi prefecture; which suffered devastation due to the tsunami and earthquake. The final work was exhibited in a home that had been damaged by the waves.

The video shows people walking in front of objects they wish to delete with mirrors reflecting the sky in their hands. Using panorama photography, the objects they wish to eliminate are blended with the blue sky. Simultaneously, the audience hear the story of why they wish to delete these things. In a place where the earthquake destroyed numerous things, this work try to reverse the relationship between individuals and event, through the active attempt to eliminate things.  In the process, the hidden personal losses during restoration were re-explored and revealed.

In the affected areas where around 20,000 lives were lost, there is a situation in which even individuals directly affected by the earthquake are very cautious of exposing personal emotions about the disaster. Citizens in the affected areas are expected to unite as a “community”, and are extremely sensitive about whether or not expressing their personal thoughts will hurt someone else. In this piece, rather than directly addressing the earthquake, instead they ask citizens the question: “What would you like to eliminate?”.  Through this process, it makes individual’s personal complex emotions visible in a roundabout way, and they physically understand through a creation of a “landscape where what they want to erase does not exist any more”.

A woman who happened to be outside the affected areas on the day of the earthquake―and who feels excluded from the rest of the community due to this lack of a shared experience―said that she wants to delete herself. A man who decided that he will no longer lie to himself after the earthquake and began crossdressing, wants to get rid of the wrinkles on his face. Individual memories of the earthquake and emotions surrounding the incident are shared, and the loss that they long for is transformed into a beautiful blue sky.





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