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Suspended Moment by Yukiyo Kawano

Grand Lobby

Suspended Moment:  Fat Man and Little Boy

by Yukiyo Kawano

Artist Statement:
Little Boy (folded) (2011):

The bomb dropped on Hiroshima on August 6, 1945 was a gun-shaped uranium bomb. This bomb was called Little Boy.

My subject is suspended in mid-air and made of tanmono silk and momen from a kimono, with my Japanese hair woven into it.

Aunt Shoko sneakily handed me this kimono on my last trip back to Hiroshima. I dream of Grandmother putting this on, a rather provocative kimono that shows her iki, an intricate allure. Cyan blue, it is the color of Shinbashi-iro, as in Shinbashi, Tokyo, the red-light district before the war.

Seventy years later, I re-traced the hand stitching of Grandmother, with a seam ripper between my fingers. I feel "Mono no aware", a gentle sadness, a wistfulness, reflecting on the ephemera of things.

As I freed patterns from the conformity of the repetitive kimono frame, suddenly there emerged the original long tanmono pieces outside of time. Being erased, they resembled something else. A different hue. A shadow. And within its perpetual folding, in the foreboding darkness, a new shape– that of the atomic bomb.

In resurrecting this, I juxtapose weightlessness with the power of distraction by the gravity of the subject. It has been a ritual-like practice, almost passive or unconscious. Of my forgetting nothing, leaving out nothing.

     Uranium bomb

        Kimono of Cyan Blue

        a gentle sadness

Earlier Event: September 25
A Sense of Wonder | by Kay Danley