Booking Void Inn AKIYAMAGOU

Mt. Torikabuto, Nagano, Japan

37°2'23.21"N, 180°33'49.63"E

Jun.16 - Aug.27

This is the work of digging the living space with body temperature and others. I stayed in Akiyamagou, a snow valley in Nagano prefecture for two months. This place is located at the point of 1400 ~ 1600 m of Mt. Torikabuto which towers above Nakatsu River. It has snowfall of seven meters. Snow destroys houses and blockades roads. It is a matter of life and death to people there if they stop their resistance against nature. The snow or “white demon” called by Bokushi Suzuki forced people to remove it both in daytime and nighttime, which developed mediums changing the village and houses to a big landform. The snow unloaded from roofs blocks the way and its height would exceed that of homes. People would be buried under snow if they failed to dig the unloaded snow to make ways between house entrances and avenues and between avenues and big streets.

I made the snow harder in slippery places and formed it like stairs. I came and went on the land mixing the village and landform. I looked for holes to dig up. I removed only what had to be cut down. People living there have been trained to coexist with snow in the “momentary couture” which immediately disappears with the end of the snow season. Snow creates landform on which people are frequently forced to live and design at one time. I stayed in the changing landforms of the snow valley until autumn. This work which recorded my stay there really showed the “coexisting power with snow” or I would say “navigation skill of snow province” in all stages.