MeiPAM: Maze Town’s Art Gallery (Shodo Island)

 

 

Located around 15 minutes from Shodo Island’s Tono Port, there’s an area called ‘maze town’ that has stayed the same since olden times!

True to its name, as you walk along the narrow winding alleys it feels as if you might just get lost.

It’s the remnants of a fort city built so that enemy forces were unable to attack it during the period of the northern and southern dynasties (1336-92).

 

MeiPAM is an art facility that uses the whole maze town as a museum. Taking a tour of the town, I visited 4 galleries that have been opened in renovated buildings like an old drapery, a cellar and an old warehouse.

At the time of our visit for this article, a truly unique exhibition was in session at MeiPAM01. The exhibition named “Mitatetemita” (‘Seeing something as something else’) consisted of works by 6 artists who from a light perspective were looking at old everyday items that were actually used on Shodo Island for something else!

 

While enjoying the “I see!” experiences, you’ll also learn the correct usage of the items, and be filled with knowledge of the olden days.

In addition, museum visitors can also post sketches of their ideas in an interactive exhibition.

 

 

After touring the town and the museum, I take a break in the museum café and try some delicious vegetable-filled island curry.

[Photograph text: Doubutsu no Aka-chan ‘Animal babies’. (It’s the oldest book I have in my memory.)

I lost my own book, but by the time my child was born, it had been rereleased and soon became the first book of two generations, both parent and child.

In the cafe there is a corner called “maze town’s small bookstore” (Meiro no machino chiisana honya-san), and I found an interesting part called “Our bookshelf”. Apparently, islanders choose books from their own bookshelves and put them on display.

When you see the bookshelf, it’s almost as if you are meeting the person, and it’s even more fun to read the books with comments attached to them.

Apparently, a new building called MeiPAM will be added to the facilities this summer!

MeiPAM
Address: 405 Tono-cho, Shodo district, Kagawa prefecture
TEL: 0879-62-0221
http://meipam.net/ (Japanese)
Setouchi Finder Photo-writer: Chizuko Konishi

 

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