Citizens and Arts : Comprehensive Edition

(著) 鵜飼宏明



When Japan lost the war in the summer of my third year of junior high school, I was suddenly thrown into a universe of "nothingness" called "freedom", stemming from an education that had been dominated by militarism. Originally, I had a strong interest in individuality and art, and wanted to be someone involved in the world of creating things, or art. However, it did not necessarily fit into daily life and may have been futile and antisocial, and be considered a very dangerous area in some ways.
Perhaps as a reflection of this, I got a job working in the news department of a television station and spent a period of time involved in journalism, while also becoming fascinated by the avant-garde world of modern dance and spending a period of art immersed in creative and critical writing. My life was divided by these seemingly contradictory worlds.

Then, two years ago, at the age of 90, I unintentionally entered the graduate stage of my life. At this time, I gathered the essays, art theories, and unpublished manuscripts I had written in the past, and looked at each of them with the respective eyes of journalism and art fields as a record of my footsteps. The result was an electronic book of two volumes, "The Citizen and the Art" [Art Edition] by Shiro Kusaka and [Journal Edition] by Hiroaki Ukai, published by 22nd CENTURY ART, INC.
I secretly named both books "Souvenirs for the Other World". I believed they were my last books before my death. However, my publisher came up with the ambitious plan to translate the original publications and translate them to introduce to a broader and more global community of readers. The publisher picked up both books and made the suggestion to combine them into one.

Thus, the two English translations of Citizens and Arts are finally being released with the intention of wrapping the new combination in a new fabric. As the author of "Kusaka + Ukai", I feel I am caught up in a double meaning of anticipation and excitement and am looking forward to seeing the results.