Concept behind the "Keep Frozen" Series
The American philosopher Henry David Thoreau published “Walden; Or, Life in the Woods” in 1854. The book is a record of the self-sufficient life he led in a log cabin that he built in a woodland by a lake. His was an act of returning to nature in an era of rapid industrialization. While for 150 years afterwards, bold acts such Thoreau’s did not happen, these days, there are quite a number of people who are aiming for a natural lifestyle. “LOHAS (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability),” “minimalist living”—though the terms may have changed, the mechanism of desire for things natural in defiance of urban industrialization is not so different to how things were in Thoreau’s time.
This series poses the question: What is a natural life in contemporary times? I have chosen ice cream as a motif, as it is a food that cannot exist without artificial manipulation. On the package it says “Keep frozen,” words that people in this day and age would not question. However, if we think about these words once again, they are none other than a request premised on a technology that is a modern invention. In this work, I return that man-made ice cream to its natural state—to room temperature, in other words. Whether one likes it or not, contemporary society can only exist artificially. These compositions express our naive attempts to return to nature in such a society. The forms created by the melting ice cream hint at certain questions: What is this “natural life” that we envision? What does it hold in store?