Chikuunsai – Godai
In late 2016, a monumental installation, made wholly of bamboo, was installed in the Musée Guimet in Paris to great acclaim. Over 19 feet high and nearly as wide, this astonishing piece was created by Japanese artist Tanabe Shochiku, now known as Tanabe Chikuunsai IV (b. 1973), the fourth generation of a prestigious family of kagoshi (master bamboo craftsmen). The work, Godai, was composed of 8,000 small pieces of bamboo; it represented a world where the five elements, or godai, that make up the world (wind, water, earth, void, and fire) intertwine. Like other great works of bamboo, or wicker, Godai was dismantled at the end of the exhibition, and the same bamboo will be used for new installations. Widely praised and collected, Tanabe’s works are in the collections of major museums worldwide.
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