Aoi Kotsuhiroi is a mysterious hunter of memories, forgotten tales that she puts in relationship with the body through her objects. Each piece has a tribal, primitive, powerful charm, which awakes our bestial instincts. Aoi catches this brutality and shapes it into poetry. After the completion of her collection “Exotic Regrets” and her exhibition at the AltaRoma event LIMITED / UNLIMITED, we took the occasion to talk with her about her world and aesthetics.
Aoi, tell us about your backgrond
Some vague memories of anthropology or butterflies hunts, stories of butoh to plunge underground into the confusing … But it’s pretty much the only things I remember.
How did your interest in design come about?
I never really had any interest in “design”, we crossed a few times but nothing that can bring us together. It is a kind of state of mind and mechanism that I do not have and that does not suit me at all.
How would you describe your relationship with your creations?
My objects are some kinds of weapons, moments of “memories”, links of relationships in which the body acts as a kind of revealing element and actor. This plan requires a form of “food”, of particular condition, a way of being in the inverse of the things.
How do you come up with the ideas for pieces?
I’m in the margins of the boundaries, I observe the invisible, this kind of transition wall between order and disorder, like a floating which would add up impressions, stories, rituals, something that can’t be measured… I have no ideas, just errors.
You have recently featured into StyleZeitgeist Magazine Issue II, how did your collaboration begin?
Things began as a kind of “animal” meeting… that day it was raining, the air had the smell of distant perfumes of something that is rising to the surface, the time led some of my answers.
We discussed in the storm, there were some habits and many improbable, sometimes the silence came back to show things. There were some surprises, like a strange, unexpected character, it made me rethink to remove nothing, to leave the “traces” as they had to be. I listened more than I talked, I looked around to understand, and all this long story has been an important meeting.
What about manufacturing, how does it all works?
I do not think about the manufacturing, I think about relationships, forms of writing. The cherry tree wood for the feet objects is a form of “memory structure”, it contains the flower and the roots, it is Hana-Mi, the Spring festival in Japan after this waiting, this fragile which is laid down. The lacquer is the sap, a substance of blood, the objects are fed and smeared with lacquer to make them “live”. Thus, each material is connected to characters, this relationship is a partition and the sound material that results escapes without saying anything to the elsewhere…
What are your favourite type of items to make?
Each object is an “organic” functioning. It organizes a sort of “habit”, of position that will take place in some of my stories, and then may determine or assert or erase … I do not really have preferences, just desires and instincts of objects that I have to “see”.
The materials that you usually use are rare and quite uncommon, is hard to find them?
I do not take this as a difficulty but as a necessity. This need is an action that puts me in a state of “hunting”, I must be even more careful in my actions, in my way to comprehend the “matter”. I can not tell me: “Here I’m going to do my shopping to the supermarket”…These materials are still alive somewhere and I have to respect them.
Does the use of this kind of elements complicates the object’s making?
These materials have a biological organization, the resulting joints react around the order and the disorder. I think about the void, about muscles in tension, about attachments that work like fluids and circulations, an underground anatomy.
Your collections are often accompanied by poems and evocative polaroids, and they are also divided into “chapters” as if there is a story behind them; what comes first the object or the narration?
The object is narration and the narration envelopes the object like a garment. The nudity dresses itself with stories and the naked object, as a disorder, looks at the limits which run away.
Your works speaks directly to the viewer’s feelings and emotions, how would you describe your aesthetic?
I was like a mistake, a wild animal with no feathers, with different lifetimes. I closed my eyes to see the rain waking up. Handfuls of earth to hold oblivion.
The fetish appeal of some pieces says something about the sexual condition of the woman or it’s just purely ornamental?
Is woman an ornament? A decoration that we keep home for show, a green plant, an object of sexual service as a way to do the intimate cleaning work… She has to kill this image of victim, to resist and act in the terrorism of survival, to develop a consciousness that allows her to be herself and not what one wants her to be.
Looking at some of your work seems that they come from another time, another reality …
Time is a corridor filled with doors, nothing is really linear, infinite variables add up and I do not know anymore which door I opened.
You have recently completed your last collection “Exotic Regrets”, would you like to share on the development of your new project?
This is a little tricky, but it is about a woman who seems to lose her identity, she would have lived a sort of separation with herself and would looked in her own memory how things happened and why. She would like to understand the lie and the circumstances that brought her into this interior monologue. There may be a witness which would be the silence and then a translator as a distant passenger… But for now nothing is really sure.