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“Masashi Echigo earned his degree in architecture at Musashino Art University, Tokyo, and has lived and spent lengthy periods of time in numerous European cities, participating in collective shows over the past few years. Each experience in each place is represented by individual installations that are spatially and emotionally tied to their context. Each installation, even though conceived independently, necessarily enters into a dialogue with the others, constructing a unique narrative landscape that is in the process of evolution, serving as evidence of his voyage. Like the storyboard for a film, this allows for an unfolding of important events in the relationship between Masashi and the history, inhabitants and culture of, and dominant issues and objects in his host locations. Hans Martens: ‘Masashi Echigo’s work is always about physical and mental space. Or rather, the tensions, contradictions and synergy between the material and the immaterial, between the visible and the invisible, the absent and the present, the literal and what is only suggested.’”
Reproduced full-colour photographs documenting various exhibitions featuring sculptures and installations of building materials and household goods, these compositions consist of common, everyday objects arranged in unusual and arresting ways that allow us to see the raw materials in a light and let go of preconceived notions surroundings these materials; a room with neatly lined-up chairs reminds us of a classroom, but the inscribed slabs of marbles propped up on the chairs give the scene a more sombre cemetery-like energy; or a collection of austere-looking pewter jugs and dishes, such as were common in Dutch households of days long gone by, stacked haphazardly in a dark space, then loaded into a rusty metal cage used for transporting scrap yard metal, a comment on our attitude towards our past?
With illuminating texts (Japanese and English) by Hans Martens, Emilia Giorgi, Angelandreina Rorro, Kamilia Wielebska, Jan Van Woensel, Lumi Tan, Frederik Vergaert, Hartwig Knack, Daniela Tomasovsky, Brenda Bikoko, Marc Niessen, Hans Minkes and Gaston Meskens, soft cover, 28,5 x 21,5 cm, 80 numbered pages, Ghent 2010