Written about SACHI MIYACHI
Alex de Vries
We forget more than we remember. Where does it all go, the things we forget? This is a question Sachi Miyachi asks herself. In various respects her work is a construction for forgotten memories. In her work, she acts like an anthropologist, making a clear distinction between the rural and the urban way of associating with the immediate surroundings. Historically, in the countryside building is mainly done with the materials right at hand, resulting in a cultural identity directly connected with the landscape. In urban environments the building materials are usually brought in from elsewhere, resulting in a different relationship between man and his surroundings.
As her starting-point for the installations she creates, Sachi Miyachi takes whatever she encounters in her immediate surroundings and, like an archaeologist, she searches for useful data. As to materials, she can take whatever lies at hand, but as regards the historical ideas connected with them, she has to make mental sieves with which to strain the memories of times out of mind from mental space. These lost memories are shapeless, yet she makes containers to hold them.
She made an installation in which she dissected a simple concrete cube in the process of construction and demolition, like a repeating cycle. Walking past this installation is like making a film. Miyachi gives shape to lost time in tangible constructions. Her work consists of passageways. She shifts space in time, also incorporating what happened there into the design. There is no cleaner place than Switzerland. Upon arrival at the airport your heart clenches at the thought you might spill your coffee, turning you into the perpetrator of a terrorist attack right away. Hence, she designed the ultimate cleaning trolley for the Swiss landscape. She rinses time, straining the gold from it. She gives shape to this in a ritual sense: she washes the viewer's hair and treats it with a special conditioner. You carry her work with you. You are one of the chosen.