では、彼が被写体とするのは、地方の伝統的な祭儀の様子なのか。･･････答えは否だ。2006年6月にNikon Salon Shinzyukuで発表された〈産土〉は、荒涼とした遠州灘の風景写真で、目に見える主題は何も写ってはいなかった。しかし、私たちに「生」を与え、やがてはその「生」を呑み込んでいく、何か得体の知れないもの―〈産土〉が、大画面の奥から立ち昇ってくるような、そんな「秘儀的な空間」を創って見せた。
Makoto Murakami formed a group called "Amatsuchi Kosaku" that was active until 2003. They created so-called earth works, and they created large-scale structures outdoors using natural materials. However, they were clearly different from Western style earth works in that they constantly aimed at creating covert ritual spaces, which did not fit into any category of art. They tried to thoroughly collect information on climate, history, myths, and folklore from local people at the production sites. While experiencing the daily lives and familiarizing themselves with the faith of the people of the land, they tried to communicate with the gods of the land to create their artworks.
Moreover, they were not opened to the public as artworks. Only participants of their "Festivals" were allowed to see them, and the structures were always destroyed without a trace at the end. They were reminiscent of the fundamental creative actions that happened before the concept of art started, and they were also a search for the possibility of new expressive actions as this system of modern arts decays.
The artist, Murakami, is now working as a photographer. The title, "Ubusuna", is the term that he has often used as the title of his works since the time of "Amatsuchi-Kosaku". According to Yoshika Mutobe (1798-1864), a scholar of national studies around the end of the Edo period, the term "ubusuna" refers to "the root fundamental god that produces all things", which means Musubi. It is said that the ubusuna god is deeply involved with humans of the land both in this world and in the afterlife (from birth to death and even after death).
Murakami's theme is consistently about "life, death and rebirth" and "communication with the transcendental world". And, in fact, we can see that in his pictures.
Is the subject that he takes up just traditional local festivals? The answer is no. Ubusuna, presented at Nikon Salon Shinzyuku in June 2006 was a landscape photograph of the desolate Enshu Nada, which did not have any visible subjects. However, he created a space for a covert ritual and showed us ubusuna as it rose up from the center of the background of a scene being shown on a large screen, showing us something unfamiliar but that gave us a view of "life", which is eventually swallowed up.
This time, Murakami will take a picture of “Ubusuna 2” at Yaeyama, Okinawa. It will be taken in the south Island in midsummer. What will he see there? And what will we see here?