Idar-Oberstein adorned:

Kyoco Taniyama – Ishi No Tabi, Yama

This exhibition takes place within the context of the jewellery symposium ThinkingJewellery XII

„Stone will flow, leaves will sink“ is a Japanese phrase. It is a metaphor used to indicate unusual or contradictory deviations from expected political outcomes or conditions. The expression condemns unethical political decisions or unjustifiable aspects of society and is therefore used to criticize or correct imbalances in both the Japanese and international political environment.
Taniyama's creative inspiration is motivated by the concept of "ubiety", the quality of being that expresses the quality of the state of being in a room. Guided by the seemingly simple question "Where am I now?" Taniyama deals with the confusion of the individual, which is increasingly intensified by globalization.

Opening speech by Hans Benda

We stand in the shallow coastal water. Our bare feet are digging into soft sand, transported by rivers from the Central German crystalline sill and finally deposited here, turned over and over and washed by the waves billions of times. We are in the Devonian. The weather is good.

In between, we are lifted by the third orogeny to a height of 5 kilometres, the water recedes, the carbon moves closer, our beach is compressed into sandstone and finally cemented into rock quartzite by the very fine crystalline quartz content.

Kyoco Taniyama positions the hammer drill. The drill bit turns a sandy flour upwards, which settles softly around the borehole. These particles had contact with the seawater 400 million years ago before they were superimposed and disappeared into the just not (!) eternal darkness. A brief moment of light, then the new darkness of my industrial hoover.

It is just as mundane as it is spectacular as an idea. If you were to turn up the time lapse so that a day and a night would pass in one second, i.e. only a grey noise would be perceptible, 4629 days would have to pass in order to unwind 400 million years.

Fortunately - or unfortunately - we cannot.  Unfortunately only because, taken to an extreme, it illustrates a shortcoming, an inability on our part: we are incapable of thinking and planning in large time frames. That is why climate change, although we are inundated with diagrams and calculations every day, leaves us largely cold. We remain incorrigibly hyperactive instead of switching back a million or two years.

In the concept of rhythm, a pause is an empty duration. A rhythm is one of the two horizontal duration structures of single sound events.  (Quote Wikipedia)

I would argue that the longest period of time we still perceive as rhythmic recurrence is the succession of generations, i.e. about 3 beats per century. 

A mesmerising example of a polyrhythm, the layering of rhythms of equal total duration (in this case, the limited durability of a machine or the availability of driving energy) is one of the two videos by Kyoco Taniyama. She filmed the wonderfully soft-knocked, ground-in supple machines and machinery in the Bengel Foundation and, like a doctor with a stethoscope, eavesdropped on the slightly vibrating machine bodies with a contact microphone. From time to time, oil was poured from the oil can, with a base material that goes back to the carbon that was emerging as described at the beginning, so it is insignificantly younger than the stones.

All religions praise the spiritual quality of repetition. A mantra, a rosary, the dance of a dervish unfold their hypnotic pull through the unforeseeability of an end. In the analogue mechanical rhythms of the machines, such an effect remains perceptible. Precisely because they do not run 100% evenly. Sometimes they choke and one senses the latent danger of blocking or fatigue breaking... one can feel and call machines or tools friends, Kyoco Taniyama does this explicitly. Algorythmic processes, which we are now trusting more and more in all areas, do not make mistakes, but in some circumstances they get everything fundamentally wrong, and that is a significant difference. Can we trust processes that know only perfect functioning or perfect failure ? 1 or 0 ?

everything turns, the vinyl record, cut, made in a new technique, not pressed, which allows the smallest runs, the shafts and transmission belts, the huge grinding stones on our local rivers. Abrasion and fragments, abandoned workpieces end up in the Nahe, in the bend of the Nahe they can still be found. They turn in the stream until their appearance is soft. Smooth like the children's bottoms of Renaissance putti.

As a doctor friend explains to me, the biorhythm of life is circular, not linear. We do the same elyptic rounds over and over again. We experience the same surprise or realisation again and again. Or miss it again and again, although it returns like the sun.

The cyanotypes hanging in the upper room are exposed to the light of the sun. This process is also known as iron blue printing and was invented by John Herschel in 1842 as one of the early photographic noble printing processes. Simply explained, the paper is prepared with a chemical iron solution in which the iron forms blue crystals under UV light. The solution, which has not been exposed to light and converted to crystals, can be washed out with water.

The shadows of the stones spread out on the ground are depicted. It is taken for granted that they resemble the shadows of mountains or hills.

In the second video shown, cliffs and mountains emerge from the blur before disappearing into the blur again. For a moment they can be identified as paintings by the colour duct or the visible canvas structure. Then again, a still image of the rock face above Oberstein, in which the trees are moving, is something that painting cannot and does not need to achieve.

Kyoco Taniyama is not known in our region, but in Japan she is far beyond the status of an emerging artist. She has realised several large works in public spaces throughout Japan, for example in the entrance halls of hospitals or companies. Her list of worldwide solo and group exhibition participations is long and of an impressively high artistic level.

In 2018/19 she was artist in residence in Berlin, where she stayed and has lived ever since.

We gratefully acknowledge the kind support of Trier University of Applied Sciences, Campus IO, and the helpfulness of the Bengel Foundation, the Mineral Museum IO and the quarry in Allenbach

Hans Benda , October 2021

When & Where

Opening: 16 October 2021 at 19:00 in Gallery CHROM VI in Idar-Oberstein.

The exhibition is open on Sun. 17 October as well as Sat. 23 and Sun. 24 October, each from 2 to 6 pm. Beyond that until 25.11.2021 by telephone arrangement. The current Corona distance and hygiene rules apply. Chrome VI, Ritterstraße 11a, Backyard, 55743 Idar-Oberstein

mail: benda(at)
web: www.

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