Suspended Organs (Kitchen)

2013

Secondhand tablecloth (probably made in 1920’s Germany) and metal tray, stitching on cloth

H.224 x W.228 x D.40 cm

Exhibited at

Ghost – Suspended Organs, Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin, Germany (2013)

Ghost – Suspended Organs, Mikiko Sato Gallery, Hamburg, Germany (2013)

In Search of Critical Imagination, Fukuoka Art Museum, Fukuoka, Japan (2014)

Artist File 2015 Next Doors, The National Art Center, Tokyo, Japan (2015)

After unravelling the secondhand tablecloth made in the 1920’s Germany the image of a heart is embroidered with the threads extracted from the tablecloth. The embroidered image of the heart is found in the centre of an old metal tray that was used for carrying food. After the Fukushima disaster I came to feel that we could no longer control what we eat, and it made me feel that our lives and bodies are always suspended in limbo. The tablecloth does not look clean because of stains, showing its long history. The reason why I often use the old fabric is that I became attracted to the fabrics made in this era in Germany because of its excellent quality. I came to be aware of them when I first saw in a Sunday market in Berlin. I asked shop staff how old those fabrics were. When she said to me that it was nearly 100 years old I couldn’t believe it. But I eventually came to believe her because shopkeepers in other stores also said the same. Those fabrics are nearly 100 years old and made around 1910-30. Also, I found later that the period was actually before the rise of Nazism and it seemed that the qualities of fabric before and after the rise of Nazism are very different. Since the surprising discovery, as if smitten by their magical allure, I have been collecting this kind of daily-use fabrics that were made prior to 1930.

Suspended Organs (Kitchen)

Photo by

Ute Klein / Kai Magnusson / Shintaro Yamanaka