CM: Nicole Kapari uses mixed media to create psychographs based on her personal experiences with cosmological dimensions. She experiments with materials with an emphasis in diversity aiming to challenge conventions. Inspired by the unconventional personality of Lafcadio Hearn, Kapari constructed an installation. She began with an investigation of the way in which Lafcadio approached life in Japan, as reflected in his books. In his stories Lafcadio followed the Japanese poetic way of perceiving nature. This perspective led Kapari to pay her personal tribute to Lafcadio's love for Japan.
Initially, Kapari used the family portrait photographed by Sota Ichida (1843-1896) of 1896, which signals the establishment of Lafcadio's life in Japan. Kapari attached a copy of this portrait onto a box, to evoke an 'iconostasis' (stand for icons) with the significance given to it in Greece - as a sacred monument. The photograph presents the family of Lafcadio - himself on the left, his wife on the other side and their first child between them. A vertical parting in the background's center serves to unite the entire installation. It runs along the axis of the child and goes out of the iconostasis in space by means of a transparent film that unfolds as if it were the story of his life itself. Kapari believes that the film's transparency evokes the clarity of Lafcadio's personality. Along its course the film caresses a picture parallel to the earth before touching the ground. The picture - balancing on an airy base made of vertical surfaces, which cut across the base, reminiscent of Japanese architecture - is inspired by the first impression that Japan made on Lafcadio. This experience, which was recorded in one of his books, describes the snow on Mount Fuji, the pale colors of the Japanese sky at sunset, the deep sea, the map of Japan made of gold and red thread that is founded on the blank pages which Lafcadio is about to fill and the axes of winds that blow the pages to different directions. On the other side of the installation rise two columns of books written by Lafcadio. These columns along with the image of Japan form a dynamic relationship that corresponds to the trinity of the Iconostasis' subject.
[Megakles Rogakos 12/2008]
ROGAKOS, MEGAKLES The Open Mind of Lafcadio Hearn 2009 The American College of Greece - ACG Art, Athens