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Ichi Ikeda, \
Ichi Ikeda, Water Station-"For the Human" was constructed in a rice field. It is the starting point of the Water Ekiden relay. 75mx75mx5m Kinpo, Kagoshima, Japan 1999

Ichi Ikeda, \   Water Station- "For the Heaven". This Water Station was converted from broken hen-breeding houses and used for gathering the water from the heavens (rain) in three water cargoes. 22mx23mx7m
Ichi Ikeda, \   Water Station-"For the Earth". A bamboo boat, one of the oldest vessels, installed on the bank of the river to load up affluent spring water from the Kawanabe district.
Ichi Ikeda, \   Water Station- "For the Human ". Irrigation canals in a rice field after the completion of harvest. It is surrounded by 'straw-fences' to magnify the 'joint' between water and earth.
Ichi Ikeda, \   Water Station-"For the Water". The 'Purified Water Line' installed along the riverbed of the former river grows longer as the number of participants from the community increases.
Ichi Ikeda

Water Ekiden, Manosegawa River Art Project

The Manosegawa River, with an overall length of about 26km, flows across the south of Kyushu Island into the East China Sea. Four local communities located along the Manosegawa River and its branches collaborated on a river art project directed by Ichi Ikeda. For many, this was their first collaborative experience reaching beyond district boundaries. According to the artist, "An artwork functions something like a magnifying lens. Through this special lens, you can see what you have never been aware of before: the inherent stories of the land, new views of the landscape, intercommunication between humans and nature, etc." Artists and people from the area worked together to create a desirable combination of what's known as Commonality and Inherency over a two month period.

The projects were presented as: "Water Ekiden Project in league with people in the basin" and "Network for producing water - essential for the future earth." The River was likened to the railway, and four water stations were constructed to represent the different water situations of each district; water from the heaven (rain), water from the earth (spring water), water for daily life (purified water), water for agriculture (irrigation water). Each Water Station provided a starting point for the Water Ekiden and asked visitors, "What kind of water can you carry to people living on the future earth?" The Committee members of the Manosegawa River Art Project talked about their own expectations, "These artworks, we hope, will encourage people to have more positive interest in water problems, volunteerism and exchanges between communities."

Water Station - 'For the Heaven'
At the Chiran community, located on the upper reaches of the Manosegawa River, Water Station - 'For the Heaven', featured 3 large water cargoes converted from abandoned hen-breeding houses and stored water from the heavens. It was designed to transfer the stored water to the desert where people are suffering from shortage of water.

Water Station-'For the Earth'
Water Station-'For the Earth' was installed in the Kawanabe district which has abundant spring water, and was created to store and transfer this water. Ichi Ikeda constructed a reed boat and a bamboo boat to serve as the "Cradle of Water" which could carry water for the careful and gentle mind. Two "Cradles of Water" were installed on the banks of the river with the sterns set into the earth to hold more spring water.

Water Station-'For the Human'
The Kinpo district is known as a well-cultivated region. The irrigation canals pull water from the Manosegawa River and stretch around to irrigate the rice fields. At the end of the rice harvest, the Water Station-'For the Humans' was created so that rice 'straw fences' surround the irrigation canals. In the event of a big rice crop, this water Station extends in all directions connecting the 'straw-fence' to the 'Joint-House'.

Water Station-'For the Water'
Water Station-'For the Water' at Kaseda extended the 'Purified Water Line' installed along the riverbed of the former Kaseda River. The 'Purified Water Line' was made by jointing 160 cases of water which have a 'Water Sender Agreement' and a photo of a handful water in each water case. As the number of community people participating in Water Senders increases, the 'Purified Water Line' extends longer and longer.

© 2010