Noh “Okinomiya” by Fukumi Shimura and Michiko Ishimure


Photo: Press conference

The Press Conference of new product of Noh “Okinomiya” was held at the workshop: Tsukikobo in Sagano, Kyoto on June 29, 2018. Fukumi Shimura, Dyeing and Weaving Artist, disclosed her remembrance of a writer Michiko Ishimure who was her close friend over 30 years, and exhibited a Noh costume that she newly made as a dedication work for Ishimure.

“Okinomiya” is based upon the concept that Shimura and Ishimure exchanged the correspondence of their views after 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.

The Noh stage shows a village, Shimosima Amakusa after Amakusa War. Amakusa Shiro escorts little girl Aya to “Okinomiya” where God of Life lives at the bottom of sea. Aya was a scapegoat dedicated for God of Rain “Ryujin” in order to save the village people suffering from the terrible drought.

Half century has passed since Shimura established her workshop at Sagano, Kyoto in 1968. The outstanding colors were developed particularly at the workshop and highly appreciated. They were solely exhibited at the Kyoto National Museum of Modern Arts to display her 60 years-works in 2016. When Ishimure was alive, she sent a message toward the Shimura’s works of dyeing with plants.

When I see works of Shimura, I feel a dignity in colors derived from soul. It is a spirit of color and a supernatural light of life. While looking at the colors of dyeing with plants, I feel like immersed into cheerful plays by color-fairies.

–Michiko Ishimure “color-fairies,” Regression to Boro, a protect cloth at the Kyoto National Museum of Modern Arts, 2016

Photo: Hand-Dyed Silk Thread

Spirituality of words and colors that they called a spirit of words and a spirit of colors are bonded together at the stage of brand-new Noh play.

In these modernization days, people tend to neglect a value of life and a reverence for nature. We would like to convey into the next generation a significant view that we have cherished from ancient times.

–Toward New Product of Noh “Okinomiya”
A group with pleas by Michiko Ishimure and Fukumi Shimura

Their mutual pleas will be realized in this autumn after 7 years interval from their own concepts.
You can see Shimura’s comment in the news video footage (only available in Japanese). Please take a look.

Inamori Foundation is a supporter of the New Product of Noh “Okinomiya.”

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