Sunset at Shimogamo

H35.4” × W25.2”
Fabric paint on silk

H900 x W640 mm


This land in Kyoto is ancestral. Shimogamo has a history extending back at least 2000 years, next to Tadasu-no-Mori (糺の森) a primeval forest mostly untouched from back then. I thought maybe something would speak to me, a semi-foreigner revisiting her roots, if I visited one of the oldest sites in this city. There was nothing unusual, just that on my way out, a patch of sunlight hit a grove of bamboo stalks and trees in front of me. Looking back on that moment—if it was even anything at all—is like trying to wrap my head around the abstract idea of a holy site standing for 2000 years. Every time we try to remember, we recreate a new memory, a re-interpretation, similar to the process of recreating an image through different media. A new memory breathing in different forms.

As part of Jiffy Moment at Konsthall, Årstaberg, Sweden curated by Sandra Leandersson.

© Kei Ota