The first three artists of our 2015 season come from Japan, and have been selected by curator
Rachel Carvosso. Rachel shares some thoughts on her process below.


From the Curator:

I have been very intrigued and inspired by the Illuminated manuscript concept of Spark and Echo Arts and having been based in Japan for 10 years I wanted to invite Japanese creative producers into the process. With little general cultural saturation of biblical background and imagery I decided to connect to a more general relevant theme of finding hope within the brokenness. Japan was hugely effected by the events of 3/11 and Fukushima and Tohoku in particular continue to be places where recovery in ongoing. How do artists respond in the aftermath and what does the bible have to say about disaster, fear, suffering and hope?

All three artists have considered both their identity as “Japanese” artists post 3/11 and questioned how the bible could relate to God`s bridging of the gap created by brokenness and sin, what should be questioned and how hope can be found even in the middle of the most painful and confusing circumstances.

For myself all these pieces remind me of the Japanese tradition of Kintsukuroi (Kintsugi). In  Kintsukuroi broken pottery, rather than being discarded is delicately restored — the cracks filled in with gold. What is broken becomes more beautiful as a result, and I find that Japanese artists responding to the bible through the prism of the disaster have a lot of beautiful and important insights to share.



The third work is from photographer Satsuki Ichikawa in response to Romans 8:24-28:

For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weaknesses. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the spirit intercedes for God`s people in accordance with the will of God. And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 











 Satsuki Ichikawa, Hope, 2015




From the Artist:

I chose to make work responding to the theme of hope. As long as we are alive we will experience some suffering and pain, we have been given the written promises of God that the pain and the suffering does not end in despair. In Japan, after the earthquake of 3.11, there are many people who are sad and even now are still suffering in some ways.

The first photo represents the feelings of these people –  feelings of sorrow, anger and tension.  I think it is important to express such struggle and emotions. In the second image the storm has subsided and hope is beginning to be found. In the third image I wanted to express the promise of God that there is no hope that the ends in disappointment.

The Sky is a canvas – when we view the sky it seems to comfort us, and it can speak into our minds.

People who have lost everything can receive a light of hope.











Satsuki Ichikawa is a freelance photographer based in Japan/Korea. She specialises in portraiture and landscapes and has exhibited widely in Japan receiving a Mitsubishi Kodak award in 2004.


Twitter: @ichikawasatsuki



This work was curated by Rachel Carvosso.

See the first work in this series here and the second work in this series here.

This image is copyrighted by the artist and used here by permission.

Help more artists create works on biblical text by donating to Spark and Echo Arts.

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