Ibuki Kuramochi: The Memory of Physicality


Performed during the exhibition SANCTUARY OF THE AFTERMATH
Angels Gate Cultural Center, San Pedro, CA
April 10 – June 12, 2021

Artist Statement:

Physicality is the key point of my art’s theme. Every human being owns their body, but it is different for each person. As anatomist Takeshi Yoro says, “There is nothing more personal than your own body.” Each body is born to and owned by each individual and is completely original.

My work exists in various media such as video works, performances, and painting works. It is produced with the consciousness of improvisation of the body performance. It can be said that both video works and painting works are extensions of performance works. I am very attracted to the improvisation of the body that is created through my performance. It is also interesting to see how the physicality of each type of performance is cut out in every different time axis. The performance is very ephemeral, as the time that is flowing now passes by in an instant. I feel that it is valuable to engrave a special and living art moment in my body. Because my body will eventually decline and die.

My father is a devoted Shintoist, and I grew up listening to stories of Shinto mysteries. In the world of Shinto, it is said that spirits dwell in everything in this world. For example: in an eyeglass case, in stuffed animals, or in anything that has been used for many years, there is a 神-Kami (spirit) named 付喪神(Tsukumogami). Spirits are always present in my life and are reflected in my own body. I have long hair, and it feels like countless spirits are living in each strand. Hair is a dead cell, but it grows every day, so there is a simultaneous view of life and death. I like to create artwork where spirituality (invisible) and the body (visible) intersect and change positions.

-Ibuki Kuramochi

Installation view: “The Memory of Physicality”, acrylic on canvas, monitor, video, human hair, metal chains. 2021

Born in Japan, multi-media artist, Ibuki Kuramochi specializes in artworks for exhibition (paintings and media arts) and live performances that combine her live painting with Japanese Butoh dance. From 2012, Ibuki started exhibiting works in major cities in Japan, U.S.A., Taiwan, France, Italy, and Australia. She studied Butoh dance at the world-renown Kazuo Ohno Butoh Dance Studio in Yokohama in 2016. Her work pursues the physicality of Butoh’s poetic choreography and the human body in anatomy. She visualizes her performance and body movements as two-dimensional works and video works. Ibuki explores concepts of the body, thought and physical resonance, metamorphosis, and fetishism. In 2019, Ibuki received a USA O-1 artist visa. She currently resides in Los Angeles.

For more of her work, please visit: www.ibuki-kuramochi.com