קטלוג תערוכת העפיפונים - page 205

Liberty Birds
ציפורי חירות
203
In 1974, Streeter’s book,
The Art of the Japanese Kite
,
placed Japan in the middle of the game board for a time.
Partly because Streeter described a Japan in which the
traditional kites were truly considered art, but also owing to
contemporary Japanese artists such as Tsutomi Hiroi, who
in his book,
Sculpting the Sky
(1972), wrote: “If sculpture
may be defined as ‘the art of systematically harmonizing and
humanizing space’ then the kite is surely a most promising
form of modern sculpture.”
Other books, such as Clive Hart’s,
Kites, an Historical
Survey
, or David Pelham’s
Kites,
published in the same
period, aroused a great deal of public interest, even more
so as the public was able to view all these kites in the
exhibitions that suddenly multiplied . In 1976, for instance,
The London Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), organized
an exhibition showcasing kites created by numerous
artists among them Tom Van Sant, Tsutomi Hiroi and
Jackie Matisse. Several months later, the
Images pour
le Ciel
exhibit (French, “Images for the Skies” as part of
the
Festival d’Automne
(French, Fall Festival) was a true
sensation, presenting over 250 kites from Europe and Asia,
as well as kites ordered specially from artists such as Tom
Van Sant, Fassianos, Folon, Jackie Matisse, Messagier,
René Bertholo, Flechmuller, David Pelham
.
The burst of interest in kites culminated in 1977 with
the opening of the first museum, devoted entirely to kites,
showcasing over 25,000 kites – the Modegi Kite Museum
of Tokyo.
In the following decades the fashion of kite festivals
developed on all continents. It enabled the general public to
discover historical kites, traditional kites originating from all
corners of the earth, as well as artistic kites, despite the fact
that the organizers often devoted a great deal of attention to
new and more resilient materials, to sports kites, acrobatic
kites, kites of spectacular shapes or huge inflatable kites,
whose aesthetic qualities are not always obvious.
The artists, almost drowned in these whirling waves,
kept their goals on track, even if they had to deal with
ambiguities borne from the success of their “artistic”
kites: some painted magnificent kites… which could not
fly, others, simple manufacturers of industrially produced
kites, claimed the status of an artist. Things became even
more complicated with the opening of the big exhibition
“Pictures for the Sky”, a noticeable event in the history
of artistic kites. The exhibition toured nine cities in Japan
between 1988 and 1989, and later in the big European
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