There is an art gallery called Jike Studio, which is located in the northern countryside of Yokohama (at Jike-Cho, Aoba-ku). The studio is a venue for showing art works, handicrafts (often coupled with workshops), music performances and surprisingly enough rakugo (comic narrative) performances as well. It has a cozy café on the same premises. I would like to introduce to you the studio’s activities and attractions a little bit more.
According to its producer, Hiromi Sakagami, the studio started by sheer chance. When an artist living nearby had her studio refurbished, some of her works were temporally kept at a warehouse. Sakagami found that these works were well suited to the atmosphere of the warehouse: so that became Jike Studio.
I asked her how she likes to run Jike Studio. To this, she mentioned a recently held rakugo performance at her studio: a rakugo storyteller emphasized that his master had always endeavored to tell something that would touch a person’s soul. She was impressed by this, so she too would like to produce her exhibitions in a way that may appeal to the inner parts of visitors.
Jike Studio has a blog at http://jikestudio.blogspot.jp and I have found some interesting sayings there. First by Masayasu Uchida, a noted artist in “Hari-e” (using pieces of colored paper to create images on a canvas), on January 21, 2012: “The world has become so convenient (by just pushing buttons), but do keep in mind the importance of using the five senses whenever possible.”
Second, by Akira Sawaoka on April 2, 2011for a project that he had taken part in. It was about an unmanned spacecraft named “Hayabusa,” meaning a peregrine falcon, which managed to land on a small near-Earth asteroid and collected some samples there, then returned to the Earth in June 2010 after seven years of turbulent space travel (it had critical troubles with engines and the self-stabilizing mechanism).
Sawaoka said that it was a strong will not to give up that had accomplished Hayabusa’s miraculous return to the Earth. “Of course, technology was important, but the most important of all was having guts. For this, you needed to have both the strength of will and perseverance.”
Third, by the same rakugo storyteller mentioned above on September 30, 2012 about his master, Hikoroku Hayasiya, who made a point: “There is nothing to fear however the world changes as long as you keep challenging.”
Sakagami of Jike Studio wishes that more people will visit the studio which is frankly speaking not that conveniently located in the Jike area. I hope that I may be able to give some help in this regard.
Hiromi Sakagami (in the center), the producer of Jike Studio, stands in front of the studio with her staff. I took this photo on October 4, 2012 during the Jike Art and Craft event, which was held from October 3 to 8, 2012. This is an annual event of open studios and workshops that are arranged by ten artists living in the Jike area, including Jike Studio.