Naoshima, Teshima, Megijima, Ogijima, Shodoshima, Oshima, Inujima, Takamatsu Port Area; Japan
Restoration of the Sea
From time immemorial, the Seto Inland Sea has been an important nexus of transportation. Boats from the mainland came and went, bringing new cultures and lifestyles to the islands dotting the Sea. Since then, each island has formed and developed its own unique culture. This rich heritage, along with its beautiful scenery, is still around today, set against the backdrop of tradition.
However, in today’s globalizing world, with increasing homogenization and streamlining, the islands are losing their unique characteristics because of the aging and decreasing of the population on the islands and the decline of the local area’s vitality.
We are holding the Setouchi International Art Festival in hopes of bringing this vitality back to the islands of the Seto Inland Sea, where the beautiful nature and the people have mingled and become synchronized together. We aim to make the Seto Inland Sea ‘the Sea of Hope‘for all places in the world.
We believe that the realization of art created through the collaboration of modern artists, architects, and local residents will bring about new discoveries in the workings of our daily life, attract people from all over the globe, and become an opportunity for local citizens to interact with the world. The Setouchi International Art Festival blends the folk customs, entertainment, festivals, and regional characteristics that have transcended the ages with the art, architecture, and drama that evoke the feeling of our contemporary times. It is a project that conveys the charms of the Seto Inland Sea to the world.
Islands x Lifestyles x Art
The power to attract people to all of the individualistic islands lies with the art and architecture that has developed there. These aspects are an art form whose purpose lies in getting people involved with nature, amid the beautiful natural setting that is inherent to the Setouchi area.
The Setouchi International Art Festival seeks to create an opportunity for a return to vitality of the citizenry, particularly the elderly populations of the islands. With those islands as our stage and through elements of life related to art, we are endeavoring to make the most of the unique customs fostered there by focusing on the islands’ lifestyles and history.
This art festival will see people gather from throughout Japan and the rest of the world – regardless of age, region, or genre of their work – in order to interact and cooperate with the local population, including the young people and children who will bear the charge of leadership in the coming generations. The process of holding the festival will act as a driving force in the development of the Setouchi area’s future.
This location will become a place that gathers together wisdom from throughout the world, and the new bonds created with the islands should bear new opportunities for the rebirth of the Seto Inland Sea.
The Setouchi International Art Festival is being planned as a project to be held every three years, with 2010 as its inaugural year. We expect that, as a “Sea of Hope” for the world, this endeavor will spread throughout every area of the Seto Inland Sea.