Thursday, March 31, 2011

Tajima 田島木綿 Exhibition at Gallery Kobo (巷房)

This exhibition (2011/03/28-04/01) by Tajima 田島木綿 at Gallery Kobo (巷房) and Project Room-306 (銀座奥野ビル306号室プロジェックト) consists of three parts: the main Kobo space (on the third floor), the under-stairs Kobo space in the basement, and Room-306.  I saw the third-floor space (see photos below) and the under-stairs space, but unfortunately Room-306 was locked up when I visited on Tuesday (apparently it's scheduled to be open on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday).

The main Kobo space reflects the title "A Waiting Room", apparently capturing the look of an old style waiting room at a train station - particularly the type seen on branch lines, which are still to be found here and there in Japan, with one room for waiting, ringed by benches and open in the center to accommodate a large number of standing people when it's crowded.

An interesting thing about the Kobo space (in what used to be rooms 302 and 303 - now combined into one space), is the floor, which is the original concrete laid down in either 1931 or 1932, which was under wooden flooring until that was torn out (along with the wall) to create the current gallery display space.  I don't think I've seen concrete quite like it before.  It's like an artwork in its own right - with interesting patterns, impressions where the horizontal wooden supports were laid into it for the original wooden flooring, etc. - and not a crack anywhere - after around 80 years.  It seems to be very solid and stable.

Lyle (Hiroshi) Saxon

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