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Niigata Water and Land Art Festival
WATERPOLIS Niigata Project 2009
about 500 meters installation on two-level crossing of rivers

Large-scale project installed around two-level crossing of rivers symbolizing long history of struggle between nature and human life in Niigata, Japan


Niigata Water and Land Art Festival
2009 7/18-12/27
Niigata City is characteristically symbolized by two big rivers; the Shinano river, the longest river in Japan, and the Agano river, one of Japan's most crear and large rivers. Formally, these two great fertile rivers wanderd across Niigata, seeking an exit, but people drilled a tunnel through the mountain and made drainage canals in order to lead the rives to an exit. Niigata has more drainage canals than perhaps any other region in Japan.

3 components for rethinking history struggle
between Water and Land

component-1 waterwatching flat
component-2 water-in-water
component-3 crossing water & earth

 1 waterwatching flat 

On the very spot where two rivers are crossing, Ichi Ikeda installed two bamboo structures what' called 'Waterwatching Flat'. This is based on his belief that river can be grasped vividly as changeable textile woven by numerous streams. You are invited there to be just a waterwatcher enjoying reading secret story hidden in living water textile.

 2 water-in-water 

The space named 'water-in-water' lies between waterwatching flat and actual river. It's expected to function like some kind of courtyard inserted for connecting human life and surrounding landscape. Compared with static garden known well as 'kare-sansui', this can be given clear definition as more dynamic space. Through this 'water-in-water', you can find a key for grasping that the river below your eyes must be just an assembly of numerous stream.

 3 crossing water & earth 

Niigata's forbearers dug several discharge channels and built the drainage pump stations with advanced technology. People can now live on this land thanks to the dozens of drainage pumping station that discharge water. Awaken the memory of long and hard struggle with water and earth.
At the first stage of this art project, we invited local people to be participants of workshop for taking photographs of two appearances of his/her hands.
your hands expressing memory of water & earth in yourself:
1) hands scooping up water
2) hands preserving earth

They must be highly estimated as positive narrators of history between water and land forwarding to the people living on te future earth. Join them.

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