Fantastic Tuesday: May 5th: Keiko Uenishi “Yummy Flower”
Maebashi City is the capitol of Gunma prefecture in Japan.
The city boasts the biggest scale of “Shōten-gai” (shopping street typically with covered with the arcade) that developed through the 60’s and 70’s, the period known as Japan’s rapid economic growth, however, its popularity dropped rapidly in the 90’s. After the millennium hit, increasing numbers of the shopping malls in the suburban area rather gained the shoppers with vehicles.
As the owners of the closed shops in the “Shōten-gai” have earned enough money back when the economy was swelling, they simply closed them down and disinterested to rent them or selling them to strangers.
The center of Maebashi now has the longest “Shuttered Shōten-gai” (closed-down shopping arcade) that looks as if it’s a ghost town, or is it? What/how the people in Maebashi are working right now? How are the pre-existing structures of the city affecting or being used by the people?
Uenishi has launched her research through meeting with artists, architect, craftsman, journalist, shop owners and workers. It will continue through the 2016 for a longer residency. She will present the first attempt of an experimental summary of this trip, compiled through discussions, listening, interviews and walking/biking around the central Maebashi.
The research in Maebashi is a part of Uenishi’s doctoral project “Partitions: Dividers, Connectors, Gray-zones, Neighbours in Aural Space”
More will pop up later at http://soundleak.org
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