For the exhibition KALPA: TIME, Hirokazu Kosaka manipulates a set of prints from an ongoing community-based project called Ruin Map in Los Angeles, Seattle, Pennsylvania and San Jose. As part of Ruin Map participants are invited to draw from memory the site of their childhood. The artist then transforms the drawings into traditional woodblock prints on handmade paper.
In this Project Space exhibition, the original woodblock prints are given new life and new meaning by the artist through the addition of thousands of poppy seeds. Kosaka’s use of poppy seeds refers to a story told by Buddha to explain the principle of kalpa. Kalpa is a Sanskrit word meaning aeon or a long period of time. In Buddha’s account of kalpa a huge, empty cube measuring 16 miles on each side, is formed at the beginning of kalpa. Once every 100 years a tiny poppy seed is placed in the cube and yet the cube is not filled before the kalpa ends. By adding poppy seeds to these prints, Kosaka builds a symbolic parallel between kalpa and the inevitable passage of time that slowly transforms our lives, our histories and our memories.