Like a little child chasing a butterfly, I try to capture a shifting atmosphere here and there with my eyes and hands. Their shapes sometimes look like my mother’s and grandmother’s, who have shown me how to live one’s life lovingly. But I am still learning to do so, as it is a difficult task.
The philosopher, Walter Benjamin re-defined the task of translation from what makes “itself remember the meaning of the original” to what “must lovingly, and in detail, fashion in its own language a counterpart to the original’s mode of intention”.
I imagine that it will be the same risk and chance for a poet to translate love, as for an artist, but it would be the ultimate task of art.
My exhibition title is the first line of a 70’s Japanese song, written by Hosono Haruomi and called ‘love is Pink’. When one is in love in the world, it appears so difference that one forgets everything and accepts everything. Such love is perhaps untranslatable but that is what my artwork is longing for.
Utako Shindo, 2016
Utako Shindo is an artist working with a range of materials and processes, including drawing shadows, projecting reflections and printing traces. She is currently undertaking her PhD at the Centre for Ideas (the University of Melbourne) to research the notion of ‘the untranslatable’and a method to embody it through ‘translation’ between perceptions, materials, locations and languages.