As the season turns, people emerge from their winter hibernation to bask in warmer and longer days. The rains come, the humidity slowly sets in, the blossom petals cascade and the grasses grow tall. Breathe deep the air that is dewy with aromas of earth, rainwater, sun, pavement pollen and car exhaust. Listen to the clamor of people, footsteps, car horns, the feathered rustle of new leaves, the creak of fences, the ripple of ponds, the syncopated din of new construction and the competing chorus of birdsongs. Shofuso’s 2018 Artist In Residence Aaron Mannino (Bucks County) is taking a cue from this swift and vibrant seasonal shift to delve into the rich, telling and shared textures of Shofuso Japanese House and Garden and its Greater Philadelphia home, exploring what constitutes a texture when represented visually or even aurally, ever curious about the nature of surfaces which are so uniquely communicative. If textures are expressions of intimate physical histories of interaction and process, is culture too transmittable through texture? Does our contact and communion with materials and textures constitute, as it were, a cultural experience? These are just some of the driving questions behind Mannino’s projects and practices.
Mannino’s artistic process is called Texture Mapping: Pine Breeze Villa. Through their novel combination of specific media, ranging from video, social media and site-specific installation, to instant analog photography (Polaroid) and works on paper, Mannino celebrates the tactile identity of places and spaces while finding the hidden rhyme of seemingly disparate elements at the close-up scale. Mannino is developing a series of works and events at Shofuso Japanese House and Garden throughout the 2018 season that draw narrative and conversational importance from its specific bounty of textures and cultural materials that reveal unique layers of local history.
All guests of Shofuso Japanese House and Garden are encouraged to use #shofusotextures to help generate a thorough open source image registry of Shofuso’s textures and patterns. In addition to the unbounded gallery space that is IG, Texture Mapping will manifest at Shofuso as well, with an intimate rotating presentation of Polaroid images through the late Spring, Summer and Fall months. Shofuso will also host several Open Studio days in which Mannino will conduct their work on-site, be available for conversation, interaction and even collaboration. Check japanesehouse.org and Shofuso’s newsletters for updates on events and exhibitions including the possibility of a workshop.
Texture Mapping will culminate in a capstone exhibition in mid October alongside Shofuso’s 60th Birthday celebrations! The exhibition will include site-specific installation works, an original film presentation with live elements of music and performance, as well as the reveal of the final “Texture Map: Pine Breeze Villa”.
- Follow Mannino on IG @ birth.coffee.death to see all of their Texture Mapping images and updates.
- Using your smartphone or camera, take closeup images or videos of textures and patterns that strike you. No filters, no edits, no zoom, just true snapshots. Get close to your subjects and truly experience them!
- Simply add #shofusotextures to your IG uploads and include Shofuso Japanese House and Garden as your location.
- If you discover similar or “rhyming” textures from elsewhere in your Philadelphia travels, post those images as well with their location and include #shofusotextures.