Chiharu Shiota at König Galerie Berlin
Chiharu Shiota spectacular installation in the Giardini at the 56th Venice Biennale has left an indelible mark in the memories as one of the most impressive works at the event. Filling the entire Japan Pavilion, “The Key In The Hand” was instrumental in the international breakthrough of the Japanese artist Chiharu Shiota, who has been based in Berlin for the last 20 years.
I HOPE…, which ultimately links back to the Venice work. Again, Chiharu Shiota has chosen boats as a starting point, derived from the idea of two hands cupped together to form a bowl, which want to pass something on.
But this time, rather than being actual, used boats, the artist has created her own vessels, metal constructions with lines like fragile skeletons resembling transparent bodies. And this time, rather than resting on solid ground, the bow of one of the boats is tilted upwards as though about to take off on an epic journey into the unknown, in pursuit of other vessels that have already set off.
The present becomes a transition into an as yet undetermined future. Clearly, this journey into the unknown is a metaphor for the ups and downs of life – of a life whose trajectory we cannot know.