L ’ I N T E R P R É T A T I O N  :  MON LIVRE NOIR

MORIOKA SHOTEN | Ginza, Tokyo

27 Feb - 04 March 2018

The exhibition at Morioka Shoten introduces the idea of “the space within book”; if books are said to be the window to the world, notebooks would be the private space of the possessors, a personal space to collect memories, to express freely and to sense the flow of time. 

 

Taking an aspect from linguistics, the word “notebook” is a noun made by two words, a verb form “note” and a noun “book”, it would be interpreted as a book formed by continuous record of something ― a space that orchestrates the transformation between tangible and intangible dialogues.  Despite whether or not notebook is fulfilled in words or drawings, itself in terms of shape, colour, condition and content may reflects the character of its possessor.  

 

We are used to white pages and expect books are the ones containing something visually substantial such as texts or illustrative images.  Black notebook may be seen somewhat conflicting to the norm, it is empty yet it seems unwrittenable; it is undecorated yet it seems complete.  Therefore we call PIIRTÄÄ Le Noir black notebook as ‘black book’ here at Morioka Shoten’s exhibition, and have gathered three talents who happened to be in common of mentioning their paradoxical feelings to Olievvp during collaboration discussions. 

 

The artworks of Martino di Napoli Rampolla, Italian creative director/founder of Numeroventi, and Matt Liao, Taiwanese photographer of ANCHE studio are here to extend the discussion about their creative spaces and the functionality of notebook, while Chung Hsuan Lan, Taiwanese artist presents his creativity through monotone digital images of contrails. 

 

When it comes to talk about favourite colours, Martino prefers white over black; like Numeroventi, the majority space there is whitish-beige that lightens up the added colours in the space.  His incentive of taking half part of the black notebook for drawing portraits of his 15 minutes artist residence  interviewees is to challenge himself over taking time to make drawing a habit and also to improve concentration.

 

For Matt, proposing certain portion of the unexposed photos that he has taken in Italy and having them selected by another person to depict his debatable thoughts about the Florentine arts in relation to tourism is experimental.  This collaboration enables him to see his photography from different perspective and reconfigure his approach to photography.

Chung Hsuan finished his Fine Art degree at Pratt Institute in New York in 2016, and has mainly worked on multimedia arts.  He doesn’t write diaries nor work on brush paintings, when he joined this collaborated curation, he thought of using the black notebook as a collection book for his unexposed photography of contrails that he had been collecting during his travels in the previous years.  Black colour is his most favourite colour and he has been working mostly on black and white images, and the decision that made him decided to work with photography for this curation is because he wanted to keep the black notebook as pure as it is (instead of adding on extra decorations and ostentatious materials to distort its original image).  To him, the moment of taking photos of contrails is the break to set himself free from the stress and disturbance in life, and also taking these moments to ponder what he could do to create highlights among his works throughout his life; like the possible intruded objects (such as stars, birds, airplanes) in-between the two contrails in the sky.  

 

Olievvp’s three pieces represent her perception of “one book, one room” by her previous visiting experiences at the store: 

(1) artwork name: ’Formation・II’; a second one under ‘Formation’ series, made by origami (folding and sculpting techniques to turn paper into a sculpture) for representing her perception in the structure of Modern Architecture.

(2) artwork name: ‘Structure・II’; a second one under ‘Structure’ series, made by paper cutting under the idea of presenting “space in space” through a coexistent perception of flat (2D dimension) and volume (3D dimension); where a single page or open pages represents “flat (2D dimension)” view and the whole book itself represents  “volume (3D dimension)” view.  It is a table display object that the squared frame has an integrated stand.

(3) artwork with flower motif; drawn by acrylic paints.

Morioka Shoten is a tiny concept bookstore, proposing “one book, one room”, for selling one kind of book in a weekly base.  It is located at the first floor of Suzuki building, a historical building in Ginza, Tokyo, and it keeps its weekly display minimalistic while reflecting well of the theme of the title, its well curated shows have attracted numerous visitors from all over the world.  The owner, Mr. Morioka (Yoshiyuki Morioka), has been in publication industry over 10 years and also well experienced in handling arts and culture related projects.  At the talk event here, we have prepared Tuscany red wine from Castello dei Rampolla and Florentine chocolates from Rivoire for guests to enjoy la dolce vita atmosphere that Martino and Matt have presented on their black books and a sense of memorable moments Chung Hsuan’s contrail photos convey.  The talk also touched upon the structural aspects of book arts by Japanese book artist Yasumoto Ota, and the story of Morioka Shoten by the store owner Yoshiyuki Morioka.