Exhibition about soil opens in Kagoshima – Artspace created with soil from prefecture

PUBLISHED Apr 14, 2022

The exhibition

On April 14, an exhibition entitled “Tsuchi wo Meguru (Revolving around Soil)” opened at Retroft Museo, a gallery on the second floor of the Retroft Chitose Building in Meizancho, Kagoshima City.

The exhibition commemorates the 10th anniversary of the building’s renovation. At the venue, soil samples collected from 58 locations in Kagoshima Prefecture and an art installation using soil are on display. Tomie Nagai, the building’s owner and organizer of the exhibition, said she collected the samples from all over Kagoshima after realizing that “everything in our lives, from food to clothing, is related to soil.” The color and texture of the soil in each area vary. “Kagoshima has many volcanoes, so the soil must have many different types. I was surprised at the diversity,” she commented.

The exhibition is “an attempt to look at the diversity of soil types from an artistic perspective,” and artist Nagisa Hirakawa handled the installation. Featured artworks include soil-dyed works by Nagai, a dyeing and weaving artist, watercolor-like works by Hirakawa created using soil, “Forest Vessels” ceramic art series by Keishokama, and Kokedama, or moss balls, and plant art by Chizuko Matsuyama of Sogakusha.

Nagai said: “Soil is the product of decomposition by bacteria and microorganisms and is full of invisible life. People in the past felt the sacred power of soil and held rites such as ground-breaking ceremonies. We hope this event will make people aware of their connection to the soil.”

The exhibition is open from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00p.m. until the 20th of this month. Admission is free. The gallery is closed on April 18.

  • “Forest Vessels” ceramic art series by Keishokama

  • Exterior view of Retroft Chitose, celebrating its 10th anniversary