Director, Demeter Tokachi International Contemporary Art Exhibition
Demeter was finished on September 23, 2002. I would like to thank
all who were involved, who came to visit Demeter, and were interested
in the exhibition. I strongly feel that Demeter was a project
that was created by so many people.
Demeter was an interestingly different exhibition. At the beginning,
I was planning a contemporary art exhibition. When
we decided to use the Obihiro Horserace Track for the exhibition
site, things began to be a bit different.
Of course, Demeter was not an exhibition to show the horserace
track. Yet, it was not going to be a mere device to show the artworks
created by the artists. It may sound a bit odd, however, it became
unimportant to me that this be perceived as a contemporary
art exhibition or not, as I was working on the Obihiro Racehorse
Track. After letting go of the preconceived notion of what it
was, I simply began to enjoy the attractive landscape that had
appeared before us.
Demeter was not an event that was completed before it opened.
It was not an event run by a planned operation manual. This is
related to my belief in the plan and I also take the responsibility
as the general director. As we used the horserace field, a site
not made for showing art, and being mostly outdoor with the unpredictable
weather this past summer, Demeter kept changing its appearance
during the period. For example, before the opening, we had to
give up on flying Cai Guo Qiangs UFO because of the typhoon.
As many children started to come to the exhibition, we began the
programs especially designed for children. When the flow line
of the audience had to be changed, we recreated the flow line.
Demeters hardware and software kept changing during the
seventy-three days of the exhibition period. It was a lot of work,
but the office and support staff did their best to respond to
such directions, and I really appreciated all their efforts.
Demeter as an exhibition has finished. As I wrote
in the catalog, it vanished in the dreamed illusion of a summer
day. And now, the racetrack is back to its old self as if nothing
has ever happened.
However, just like Tadashi Kawamatas work, I am strongly
feeling the absence of Demeter. Even it is not here anymore, it
still exists. Although Demeter has ended, it feels like Demeter
is still going on in somewhere else.
This sense of absence may be the largest result of Demeter. Many
young people who have been involved in Demeter began to do various
things to overcome the sense of loss. I feel that something has
began to change in the city of Obihiro.
I would like to thank everyone who was involved. I hope Demeter
is the end of something and, at the same time, the beginning of
by Serizawa Takashi)