2016 Teshima Setouchi Triennale Art

Teshima is one of the bigger islands of the Setouchi Triennale and with that comes the need for more time to see the art.  The art is focused around 4 areas of the island and takes up to a day to see all of it.  In reality, you need one and a half but all of the art is wonderful and there is a lot to see and do while you are there.

022 – Was du liebst, bring dich auch zum weinen(japanese franchise version) (sic)

Was du liebst, bring dich auch zum weinen(Japanese franchise version) by Tobias Rehberger is a returning artwork for the 2016 Setouchi Triennale.  It was amazing the first time I saw it but the second time I saw it I didn’t feel as impressed.  It is a great artwork but it doesn’t stand the test of time for me in something that would make me want to visit over and over again.  I still enjoy the crazy lines and colours but I was a bit sad that the cafe was closed when I visited.  From the sign, I believe it was only open on weekends for the summer and I couldn’t imagine why as the Triennale was in full swing.  Il Vento, the name of the cafe, is a good place to have a cup of coffee but I’m unsure of the opening times so don’t be sad if they are closed.

Was du liebst, bring dich auch zum weinen

Was du liebst, bring dich auch zum weinen by Tobias Rehberger

023 – Teshima Yokoo House

Teshima Yokoo House was designed by Tadanori Yokoo, with the architecture work done by Yuko Nagayama.  For all intents and purposes, Tadanori Yokoo is the visionary of this museum as he created the sketches but Ms. Nagayama made it come true.  The entire building is amazing and the overall concept is great.  I really loved the museum but I am torn on the art that is within the museum.  Mr. Yokoo has a weird perversion that is easily seen in his artwork with an obsession with waterfalls for the pieces.  The tall tower next to the main house is also an amazing place that echoes with fun.  Be sure to check out the washrooms too for a real treat.

Teshima Yokoo House

Teshima Yokoo House by Tadanori Yokoo

024 – Needle Factory

Needle Factory is a simple artwork by Shinro Ohtake.  The name comes from the fact that the “building” for this artwork used to be a needle factory.  The entire factory has been gutted and most of the structure is nothing more than a skeleton.  The walls are still there to help protect you but the roof and windows are completely removed.  They also moved a huge boat into the factory that used to be in Uwajima.  It is a real sight to see but in the summer heat there is no shelter from the sun; it can be very easy to get heat stroke.  Also be careful as the entrance doors can get very hot in the sun.

Needle Factory

Needle Factory by Shinro Ohtake

026 – Particles in the Air / Karato

Particles in the Air / Karato by Noe Aoki is an interesting work.  In 2013, I didn’t like it, but in 2016 I warmed up to it.  The artwork is nothing more than hoops and bars that extend into the air.  Obviously, from the title, it looks like particles in the air.  In 2013, I went in spring when the vegetation was not really good and the well next to the artwork was turned off.  In summer, it did look much better with more lush vegetation, but I still found it weak overall.  It is worth a visit if you can go but not something that you must see.

Particles in the Air

Particles in the Air by Noe Aoki

027 – Your First Color (Solution In My Head-Solution In My Stomach)

Your First Color (Solution In My Head – Solution In My Stomach) is an artwork by Pipilotti Rist.  Looking at photos, I really liked the artwork but when I first visited in 2013, I was confused.  I didn’t know what it was all about as the beautiful colours that were in the photos were not the only parts of the video.  There were also videos of eyes and other body parts.  I really didn’t like the body parts but I loved the various colours from the video of fluids.  I still don’t like this one that much but everyone has their preferences.

Your First Color (Solution In My Head - Solution In My Stomach)

Your First Color (Solution In My Head – Solution In My Stomach) by Pipilotti Rist

028 – Shima Kitchen

Shima Kitchen has been one of my favourites on Teshima since I first visited.  Since I only go to Teshima once every 3 years, I had to go back and enjoy the wonderful meal.  The main building is a restored house and the back terrace was constructed for the Triennale.  The design was by Ryo Abe and it is wonderful.  The lunches sell out fast so be there early to get a reservation.  If you cannot, Shima Kitchen also has bento boxes and curry rice in a small shop next door.  Both places allow you to head outside to the terrace to enjoy your meal.  If you are alone or in a group of 2, you are likely to be seated at the counter where you can enjoy watching the cooks do their magic but if you are in a bigger group, you will probably be at a table to enjoy the view.

Shima Kitchen

Shima Kitchen by Ryo Abe

029 – Storm House

Storm House was created by Janet Cardiff & George Bures Miller and it is a genius work.  I love returning to Karato because of this house and I really absorb the work.  They converted the main rooms of the house and outfitted it to simulate a storm that approaches and leaves.  You can hear the rain from afar and as it approaches.  There is a lot to absorb in the artwork.  It takes about 10 minutes for 1 cycle.  I was worried I wouldn’t like it a second time, but I still loved it!

Storm House

Storm House by Janet Cardiff & George Bures Miller

030 – Hotel Lemon

Hotel Lemon by Smiles: is my new favourite work on Teshima.  There are a lot of great artworks in the Karato area and I was really surprised by it.  It is an artwork that does require 2 people but you can still have a little fun on your own.  There is an “audio tour” for your experience and you can really enjoy the artwork as you do acts with your partner.  It was designed for couples but if you are with a friend, I’d guess it is okay.  Be aware that they only have a few English radios so you may have to wait a while to get one or you can try the Japanese like I did.

Hotel Lemon

Hotel Lemon by smiles:

031 – Teshima Art Museum

Everyone goes to the Teshima Art Museum and it is a great place.  I love what Rei Naito did to design the place but it is hard to really enjoy it with dozens of people there at all times.  During the festival, there is a line to enter the museum so be aware that you may lose a lot of time trying to enjoy it.  I really thought it was a good place to relax and meditate.  A lot of people are sleeping in the artwork and the peace that you feel really helps you to do so.  I could easily spend hours just absorbed in my own thought when visiting but I couldn’t as I always worry about others who are waiting to get in too.

Teshima Art Museum

Teshima Art Museum designed by Rei Naito


The above is my own personal review of the art on Teshima.  If you want to be surprised by the art, I recommend that you do not read more than what is written here.  Links will follow the single paragraph describing the basics of the artwork when the posts are ready.  Please keep an eye on the social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus) for information when they go live.  Photos may also give away part of the art, but in this post, they are minimal.  Spoiler alerts in individual posts will be given when it is necessary for you to enjoy the art for the first time.  If you will not be going to the Setouchi Triennale, feel free to follow the links and read everything and enjoy it as best as you can.  Links to individual art reviews will be coming in the following months as soon as possible.