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ART : MATAGI / Hajime Kimura

MATAGI / Hajime Kimura


The river in the bottom of the ravine was half frozen. It was a mother bear that had been shot, and dark-red blood was seeping into the freshly fallen snow.
The sun was setting, and my fingers had were freezing even inside my gloves. The men turned the bear’s body and I could see a vivid white pattern like a boomerang on her chest. The rest of her body seemed so black that I felt the word “jet” could be used only for this bear. The deep-darkness was beating slightly. Her eyes were shining emerald green. I felt she was looking for her child.
The first time I learned the word “matagi” I was 21. At that time, the word was an abstraction from literature. I could not imagine the cold northern matagi world.
The white boomerang was immediately colored red when a dagger was stabbed into her chest.
She died in the beginning of a new spring, and some big-black men stood around her. I wondered how her child would survive … Her fresh blood flowed out from an artery. Steam rose from the deep fat under her fur in the freezing air.
In the end her heart quietly stopped beating.

Hajime Kimura
(Quotation from the artist statement / Reminders-Photography-Stronghold, Tokyo, Japan: 2013)

Hajime Kimura

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