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"Wishes At Gion Matsuri"

“Wishes At Gion Matsuri” is based on my photograph of young women at the month-long Gion Matsuri festival in Kyoto, Japan. The festival is "part of a purification ritual to appease the gods thought to cause fire, floods and earthquakes." It includes Saki-Matsuri, an elaborate parade of small and large floats, and Ato-Matsuri, a colorful pageant of children, dance groups and Geisha.  Although dressed in traditional kimonos, these young women provided a modern counterpoint to the sacred ritual:  sitting, texting, connecting with people who aren't present. In my painting installation, plastic party favors float above the young women's heads and glide below their feet as if they were birds and snakes grounded to a spiritual plane. Sand, clay, a bamboo basket and a wooden fan are collaged into the painting to symbolize the persistence of time. A looming fabric sculpture of "Kitty White," known in America as "Hello Kitty," creates a collapsible vertical horizon.

Scroll down to view detail images of "Wishes At Gion Matsuri"


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