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Baco Ohama

MIYOSHI: A Taste that Lingers Unfinished in the Mouth


September 19 - October 24, 2002

I have been trying to understand this complex space where water meets land meets water meets land meets water . . .

When I made the move to British Columbia in the summer of 1995, it was to be closer to Steveston – this place where my maternal grandparents lived prior to World War II. This is where Ojiichan (my grandfather) fished and built fishing boats, Obaachan (my grandmother) worked in the cannery and tended her chirashi perennial garden, and where they raised their family before their evacuation to a sugar beet farm in Manitoba.

It is here on the West Coast that I have been reconsidering my relationship to water, having first learned about mizu out there on the prairies. I have been thinking about how history, even events prior to one’s own birth, impacts our lives and affects who we are. How we live and breathe. Whisper or sing. How history affects one’s relationship to language. One’s understanding and relationship to others and to oneself. And how all this, affects not only the work one produces, but how one builds.

Over and over again I have been led to the water’s edge to think about the relationships between history, language and location; and what lies in the space between what is articulated by tongue and mind, and that which is felt in the gut.