New Balance of Life is a minimalist exhibition between Kosaku Matsumoto and artist Mitsuhiro Yamagiwa. In our everyday lives, most body movements are subconscious. For example, when you wear the traditional Japanese garb, ‘kimono’, ordinary movements like “walking” turn to an extra-ordinary action; you will be forced to walk with short-steps and be suddenly self-aware of “how to walk” due to its form. In this instance, we think about “how to walk” again and become more conscious of our movements, behavior, and surroundings. The designers made three works, a shoe rack, a cup hanger, and a plate rack, (as a behavior of propping up shoes, a behavior of hanging, and a behavior of a paused moment). Stainless steel sheet was bent with the least bending required for structural strength, and the highly polished mirror finish changes its appearances delicately according to placement. Each work displays a precariously balanced object. The instability forces the user to first carefully observe how balance and equilibrium would manifest before placing an item, quite different from what we would expect from simply placing something on a normal shelf. The shape of shoes, size of cup handles, texture of plates and unevenness of walls and floors – overlooked details and nuances suddenly come to attention.
Photography by Nobutada Omote