Andrew’s world in Japan

_MG_8892_editAndrew Artist & researcher based in KL since 2009, passionately exploring thcreative process & connecting with other creative people.




Language of Observation – Part2



On his small table, Hiro has this beautiful sculptural looking glass teardrop sitting atop a wood base. Reviewing my notes and considering ideas for what to visit next, my eyes cannot help but be drawn to this object. Yesterday I asked Hiro about it to learn that it’s made in China of borosilicate glass. Inside is a strange substance that seems like a science experiment. Daily it changes shape. Often it seems like crystals. Apparently it is some form of natural camphor substance that changes with the climate.





IMG_3148During the 19th century, this glass teardrop was a tool called ‘The Storm Glass.’ Depending on breaks in the weather the crystals form and reform in new patterns. It’s not in constant motion detectable to the eye, more like something to check first thing in the morning. There may be patterns, but completely new to this tool, it will take awhile before I am able to extract any valuable interpretations from it. This is almost exactly how I feel around new people and cultures. Sure, it is exacting. Looking at this particular object, this ‘storm glass’ tool, I see beauty, elegance, mystery. Much the same as what I see when walking amongst new and unfamiliar places or cultures.



_MG_9125_editBack in Tokyo for the first time in a number of years, I’m filled with intrigue. There are endless bounds of places to visit and explore, new flavors and sights for my taste buds. Sure, I may have written a plan created the night before, but a day is more like the crystals, changing with the climate. They observe the laws of nature as I attempt to observe the nature of people and places. Parallel lines between nature, tools and our societies fire me up to know more.

It seems like “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” I am still that child seeking to observe the face and expression of people in their interactions. Today in Ebisu, tomorrow… Timbuktu?