Hidetoshi Nagasawa, Descending Column, 1991, burnished bronze, Peccioli, Via Carraia
Hidetoshi Nagasawa was born in Manchuria in 1940 and forced to flee with his family to Japan during the Second World War; after approaching the Neo-Dada group and the Gutai group, in the 1980s he became interested in and investigated on the possible relationships between sculpture and the environment, culminating in a production of proper installations in the following decade. The work in Peccioli is a burnished bronze column with a ten-pointed star section, deprived of the usual function of structural support, located where via Bastioni bends into via Carraria. Suspended, almost embraced by the contiguous and converging walls of the alley, it is firmly anchored to the medieval town walls by a thick steel cable. The temporal and spatial suspension of the work is emphasized by the ancient architecture housing it, undermining the consequentiality of events. Nagasawa says: “I have walked around in Peccioli several times and I liked it a lot. So, I intended to respect it. First of all, I said to myself that I should not disturb it with one of my works and I had to look for the most hidden, least striking place. I thought I would produce my work and then I would leave again, while the citizens of Peccioli would see it every morning; and let’s say, what if they did not like it, or, even if it was beautiful in itself, what if it was not successfully integrating with the environment? It would have been a hardship for them to see it continuously. So, I clearly worked in the opposite way of what has been the basis of the concept of a monument”.
“The Descending Column by Hidetoshi Nagasawa is an event that takes place right in the body of the form, or better, in one of the clearest forms, almost an archetype. The work acts as a storage of its own figures; it is movement and rest at the same time, something that has an architectural sense without architecture. It is suspended there, absorbed in the expectation of being able to establish a place where mankind can «poetically live».”
The work is part of the project “Species of spaces” (1991-1992) in which the artists Vittorio Messina, Vittorio Corsini and Hidetoshi Nagasawa were invited to work in Peccioli, taking into account the social impact of the project and dealing with places and landscapes to create works that are coherent with the context.
More info: Archive of Fondazione Peccioliper