In(verses) Ways

In(verses) Ways

In(verses) Ways is based on my journey; Japan-Brazil -Japan
The first Japan is more imaginary, known only through my mother and family, by old pictures, tradition of old songs and stories. An (in)existing place that was present in my childhood imagination and visible only in my family name and appearance.
The second journey Brazil-Japan is the reality, my true experience through my eyes and life. By this journey, I return to the first Japan, to the country where my roots are dormant, making the inverse way of my family’s history with an attempt to identify myself, looking for my own way.
In the middle of this journey, I find the poem of the Portuguese Poet Fernando Pessoa; “Any way leads to every where” (1921) 。In this poem, Pessoa says that any way can lead to every where, at any point it can be separated, divided, because all the ways are inside of us. Any direction, distance or end only belongs to us.

edo map

“Any way leads to every where
Every where
At any point in two is divided
One leads where it indicates the road
Another is alone

One leads to the end of simple road. Stops
Where it finishes

Another is the abstract margin
Ah! The ways are all inside of me.
Any distance or direction, or end
Belong to me, it is me. The rest is the part
Of me that I call the exterior world (…)” *

(Fernando Pessoa, 1921)
*translated by myself

I follow the Pessoa’s verses trying to merge the imaginary (my past) and the reality (my present) and intersecting them into my drawings. I take the imaginary Japan through old Japanese maps of Tokyo (of 200 years ago) and divide, cut, separate and transform them into my directions. An allusion of the pictorial images of my childhood; I can walk on the inexistent streets, enter the houses, read the family names and navigate the rivers… It is an attempt to return to that past and create a new reality, an identification process of the self.

As Welsh says about Invisibles Cities of Italo Calvino; “…the city outside the eyes – the city beyond the self – is invisible. Only the city inside the self can really be perceived; or rather, the only city that is perceived is the represented city inside the self” (John Welsh, University of Virginia).

Therefore, the imaginary country of my childhood returns to my present, it is inside of me. I follow my own way in the Poetic of Pessoa’s words, and my journey between Japan-Brazil-Japan becomes just one, without limits of time and space.

November, 2007