Then the woman explained to me the contradiction of Japanese hair being so straight and flat, and yet pliable into these kinds of dimensions. It's the same with kimono, she said, on its own it is flat and straight, just square shapes; but wrapped just so around the shoulders, draping elegantly on the arms of a woman, it transforms into a curving and sensual line. At least I think that's what she said.
That's what I love about art here -- there's always some kind of underlying philosophy, a metaphor of relationships that seems to cut right to the essense of things. It's not just a pretty hairstyle, it is a coded message; a signifier of age, of status, of position in time. I want to achieve the same meaningfulness in my art, but without appearing contrived or pretentious. This, I surmise, is a life-long process.
On the way home I stopped at yet another furuhon-ya-san (used bookstore) to gather materials for collaging. I got a couple of pocket atlases and a pile of worm-eaten maps, sensing an emerging theme...
Now it's time to conjure images and feelings from flat surfaces: off to the drawing board!